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California Bookwatch

Volume 2, Number 1 January 2007 Home | CALBW Index

Table of Contents

Donovan's Picks Military Shelf Computer Shelf
Sports Shelf Homeowner's Shelf Gardening Shelf
Interior Design Shelf Money/Finance Shelf Social Issues Shelf
Fantasy/SciFi Shelf World History Shelf Political Science Shelf
American History Shelf Architecture Shelf Art Shelf
Theatre/Cinema/TV Shelf Graphic Novel Shelf Photography Shelf
Science Shelf Economics Shelf Business Shelf
Jobs/Careers Shelf Metaphysical Studies Shelf Christian Studies Shelf
Audiobook Shelf Library DVD Shelf Literary Shelf
Crafts Shelf Needlecraft Shelf Antiques/Collectibles Shelf
Human Sexuality Shelf Health/Medicine Shelf American History Shelf
Psychology Shelf Biography Shelf Music Shelf
International Studies Shelf Nautical Shelf Cookbook Shelf
Travel Shelf Aviation Shelf Railroading Shelf
Self-Help Shelf Gaming Shelf True Adventure Shelf
Pets/Wildlife Shelf Mystery/Suspense Shelf Fiction Shelf

Donovan's Picks

Girls' Night In
Jennifer Worick
Lauren Glen
5880 Oberlin Dr., San Diego, CA 92121-4794
1592232760 $9.95

Think of pampering and spas and usually one thinks of paying big bucks to leave home and obtain professional treatment: but as GIRLS' NIGHT IN: SPA TREATMENTS AT HOME shows, many of the same results can be achieved right at home on a budget. Use GIRLS' NIGHT IN to host a spa party: seasonal themes, recipes for home products and healthy foods and drinks, and even cocktail recipes make GIRLS' NIGHT IN an appealing alternative.

The Pocket Survival Guide
J. Wayne Fears
Stoeger Publishing
17603 Indian Head Hwy #200, Accokeek MD 20607
0883173050 $12.95

If it's basic survival techniques you need to survive a short-term crisis, read this book – then keep it close at hand. J. Wayne Fears is a search and rescue official trained in survival skills in the military, so his tips are backed by Army training. From preparing for local weather and emergency signaling to avoiding hypothermia and dressing for the unexpected, any planning a camping trip or outdoors venture must have THE POCKET SURVIVAL GUIDE: THE ULTIMATE GUIDE FOR SHORT-TERM SURVIVAL in the backpack.

The Big Book Of Boy Stuff
Bart King
Gibbs Smith
Box 667, Layton, UT 84041
1586853333 $19.95

While THE BIG BOOK OF BOY STUFF is intended for ages 8-14, in actuality it will appeal to many an adult and is featured here for its survival recommendations for harried parents. Here are over 1,000 ways to entertain a boy, from jokes and fireworks to armpit bagpipes, experiments, and juggling practice. These are perfect games and exercises for any family – and any parent seeking to distract or entertain a boy.

Destination Bride
Lisa Light
North Light Books
c/o F&W Publications
4700 E. Galbraith Rd., Cincinnati, OH 45236
1558707034 $24.99

A 'destination wedding' is something special: an opportunity for both bride and groom to travel to another locale to wed – anywhere in the world. Use DESTINATION BRIDE: A COMPLETE GUIDE TO PLANNING YOUR WEDDING ANYWHERE IN THE WORLD as the stepping stone to achieving a smooth non-local wedding. Chapters touch upon all the basics; from communicating with guests and organizing the ceremony to choosing the right location, researching its resources, and making travel arrangements for guests and family. But there's more than generalities about weddings on the go: final sections cover the specifics of countries around the world from Africa and Asia to Europe, and include specific recommendations for places which lend to weddings and establishments which cater to them. Very highly recommended.

Land Navigation Handbook
W.S. Kals
Sierra Club Books
85 – 2nd St., San Francisco CA 94105
1578051223 $16.95

This updated second edition of LAND NAVIGATION HANDBOOK: THE SIERRA CLUB GUIDE TO MAP, COMPASS & GPS could also have appeared in either our Sports or Military columns, but deserves mention here to be sure the widest possible audience receives notice of the completely updated edition including new text by Clyde Soles. Here is a pocket-sized 'bible' of outdoors survival, providing basic keys on everything from using maps and compass to using an altimeter, navigating by kayak on lakes, understanding GPS navigation and how to choose and use a GPS unit, and even how to navigate by moon and sun alone. Photos, drawings, and a fold-out topographic map provide plenty of visual illustration and examples of the details and make for an invaluable instructional reference both in the field and for at-home study.

Wilderness Navigation Handbook
Fred Touche
Touche Publishing
207-900 Berkeley Rd., N. Vancouver, BC, Canada, V7H 1Y2
Independent Publishers Group, distributor
814 North Franklin Street, Chicago, IL 60610
0973252707 $17.95 1-800-888-4741

If you have room to pack just one book on navigation concepts, WILDERNESS NAVIGATION HANDBOOK should be the item of choice: it covers all the basics of using maps, charts, natural and man-made navigational tools to navigate in all terrains, from desert and glacier to jungle and oceans. Chapters are organized by type of navigation system and discuss basic principles of navigation systems, contrasting pros and cons of each.

Jill Fredston
525 'B' St. Suite 1900, San Diego, CA 92101
0151012490 $24.00

Author Jill Fredston has worked in avalanche prevention, education and rescue for several decades, trying to keep people and avalanche disasters separate: her account of her experiences in SNOWSTRUCK: IN THE GRIP OF AVALANCHES provides an excellent mix of science, adventure and autobiography as it surveys her experiences. From triggering them with explosives to teaching potential victims how to stay alive, Fredston's many encounters and stories all hold lessons for survival.

Bill Osgerby
Lyons Press
Box 480, Guilford, CT 06437
1592288413 $29.95

Think 'biker' and you think of a tough outlaw – but cultural historian Bill Osgerby thinks otherwise, and dispels the common stereotype in his BIKER: TRUTH AND MYTH, a survey of how the original biker became the bad boy of the movies. Biker groups aren't limited to gangs: they can consist of seniors and other groups, especially today. While rebels do exist, BIKER covers both types of groups, packs in plenty of photos, and covers all kinds of details of motorcycle culture, from movies and magazines to stunt riders and beatniks.

The Da Vinci Fraud
Robert M. Price
Prometheus Books
59 John Glenn Dr., Amherst, NY 14228-2197
1591023483 $18.00

The best-seller novel THE DA VINCI CODE by Dan Brown sold millions and stirred imagination and debate, weaving theories about Christian origins with a fictional murder mystery. New Testament scholar Robert Price, member of the Jesus Seminar, here examines the fallacies of Christian history and usage in THE DA VINCI CODE, drawing important connections between fantasy and real history and adding religious insights based on known facts about Jesus and his life, the Gospels, and historical figures. Readers who have followed THE DA VINCI CODE will find THE DA VINCI FRAUD: WHY THE TRUTH IS STRANGER THAN FICTION equally engrossing.

Windstrom Creative
7419 Ebbert Dr. SE, Port Orchard, WA 98367
$12.99 Each

Two fine caregiving guides are recommended picks. R. Anders Porter's COPING WITH A LOVED ONE'S DISEASE (1590920449) comes from experience: the author's fiancee was diagnosed with Lupus and they faced a struggle to keep their lives and relationship from falling apart. Lessons they learned from the experience identify sources of strain, the importance of humor, and how the author coped. Chanda Bloodgood's BECOMING A NANNY: WORKING AS A LIVE-IN CHILDCARE PROVIDER (1590921763) tells how to work as a live-in nanny, assessing the pros and cons of the job and offering a blend of business worksheets and insights. Add extensive website resources and tips on educational activities for children and you have a practical guide at hand for the venture.

Alfred A. Knopf
c/o Random House
1745 Broadway, 17th floor, New York, NY 10019 1-800-726-0600

Two excellent, very different titles are highly recommended picks for both college-level and general public library holdings. Andrew Delbanco's MELVILLE: HIS WORLD AND WORK (0375403140, $30.00) provides a biography of the creator of Moby-Dick and other classics, from his growth as a bawdy storyteller to his later, more mature narratives. Details of his personal life from his family losses and strife to his friendships with Hawthorne and other literary contemporaries do more than just review his influences: they draw important connections between his experience and his literary devices, and will enhance any reader's understanding of Melville's works as well as his personality and times. A recommended pick; particularly for college-level students of Melville seeking added depth. Leslie Savan's SLAM DUNKS AND NO-BRAINERS (0375402470, $23.95) discusses language as it relates to media, business and modern culture, offering chapters which focus on American language patterns. Leslie Savan has been a Pulitzer Prize finalist three times, and lends authority and insights into the means by which words and expressions become popular or fade. From sitcom writers' influence on the development of pop language alternatives to understanding how language and reality interrelate, SLAM DUNKS AND NO BRAINERS: LANGUAGE IN YOUR LIFE, THE MEDIA, BUSINESS, POLITICS, AND, LIKE, WHATEVER offers some very important insights.

Dreams of the Solo Trapeze
Mark Schreiber
Canal House
0975466402 $19.95

Author Mark Schreiber first met Olga Sidorova in 2002: she had run away from Siberia as a teen to follow her dream to fly – and entered the world of the trapeze with the performers Cirque du Soleil. DREAMS OF THE SOLO TRAPEZE: OFFSTAGE WITH THE CIRQUE DU SOLEIL describes her journey – and the group's evolution – from one who traveled with them and become an 'insider' rather than a reporter. It's at once a biography, group history, travel narrative and love story like no other, and any with an interest in performances or circus acts will find the journey compelling.

The Root of Wild Madder
Brian Murphy
Simon & Schuster
1230 Avenue of Americas, New York NY 10020
0743264193 $25.00

Devotees of the Persian carpet have had numerous carpet buyer's guides and histories in the past, but ROOT OF WILD MADDER; CHASING THE HISTORY, MYSTERY, AND MORE OF THE PERSIAN CARPET is something different: a journey which follows the Persian carpet from remote Afghanistan and Iranian villages where they're often woven by young girls to bazaars which trade them, artists which revere them, and US carpet showrooms which display them for sale. Carpets are dyed often by the madder plant which lends them brilliant reds – but the color and dyers' traditions threaten to die back, and reporter Brian Murphy is just as determined to capture the magic, methods and allure of these carpets in his survey of the Persian carpet. The blend of travelogue journey and carpet facts works exceptionally well in THE ROOT OF WILD MADDER, lending it accessibility even to those without a consuming passion for Persian rugs.

Artificial Rock Waterfalls
J. Erik Kinkade
Granite Canyon Publications
2631 W. Bennett, Springfield, MO 65807
0972003657 $59.95

You can build a rock waterfall not just for a pond but for a swimming pool, spa, or garden; especially with the step-by-step ideas and instructions in ARTIFICIAL ROCK WATERFALLS: ROCK MAKING TECHNIQUES FOR THE PROFESSIONAL AND THE HOBBYIST. Produce fountains and falls which look entirely natural, blend it into an existing theme or environment, and understand the materials and construction techniques of different layers in a guide which is loaded with photos of the step-by-step process. Discussions of design alternatives, electrical and plumbing options, and more provide everything you need to gain an idea and the knowledge to follow through.

Your Brick Oven Building It & Baking in It
Russell Jeavons
Grub Street
4 Rainham Close, London SW11 6SS, UK
190494325X 10.99 Brit. pounds

If you want to build your own brick oven for baking, you can't go wrong with (and simply must own) YOUR BRICK OVEN: BUILDING IT & BAKING IN IT: it's a bible of facts about the step of building such an oven, from suitable sites to using it in baking. Base, domes and construction are all covered, along with first firing and cooking tips. While it's more a construction guide than a cooking guide, YOUR BRICK OVEN serves both audiences well – and as there are relatively few other books on the market on the topic, it earns a place as a unique recommendation for any homeowner adding such an oven to a house project.

Writer's Digest Books
c/o F&W Publications
4700 E Galbraith Rd., Cincinnati, OH 45236

Adding to the indispensable references Writer's Market and Poet's Market are more specific guides for selling items: each completely revised and updated to make for invaluable references The 2006 ARTIST'S & GRAPHIC DESIGNER'S MARKET (1582973962, $24.99) is an art reference every artist needs to have: it holds articles, interviews and packs in over 1,900 listings of paying sources which buy art. The contact information has all been updated, and markets are extensive, ranging from publications and card publishers to galleries and ad agencies. Newcomers will appreciate the in-depth industry articles which offer plenty of marketing ideas and insights. The 2006 PHOTOGRAPHER'S MARKET (1582973954, $24.99) is for any aspiring photographer who wants to build a career and locate new markets. Interviews with working photographers and articles on the business of photography accompany listings which even have tips from photo buyers, name contacts and emails, and submission guidelines. If your art or photography is more than just a hobby, you simply can't be without these two references: no reference shelf is complete without them – and no marketing effort complete without their advice. The Memory Makers ULTIMATE GUIDE TO SCRAPBOOKING (1892127652, $24.99) is recommended above most competitors: arranged in easy lay-flat hardcover binding, it includes an overview of basic tools, photography tips, journaling ideas, computer scrapbooking coverage, and tips on everything from cropping to arrangements. Color-coded pages create easy references and a quick-look-up format.

Periplus Editions
c/o Tuttle Publishing
364 Innovation Drive, North Clarendon, VT 05759-9436

Wongvipa Devahastin na Ayudhya and Sakul Intakul's MODERN ASIAN LIVING (0794602916, $45.00) is a top pick for any involved in architectural design, whether it be interior or exterior – and especially for regional or ethnic design. It outlines classic sleek, modern structures with Asian influences which represent the latest wave of Asian architectural talent, and it provides color photos on every page – many full-page displays – to capture the Asian architectural styles indoors and out. Introductions to each set of photos (photos by Masano Kawana) provide an overview of modern homes and how they were changed or built to incorporate the Asian design models. Richard W. Lewis' ABSOLUT SEQUEL: THE ABSOLUT ADVERTISING STORY CONTINUES (0794603319, $30.00) comes with a CD-ROM of images as it gathers the best of the last ten years of Absolut advertising. Any involved in the ad world will readily acknowledge Absolut's ads offer consistently productive results, with eye-capturing images: the formula is simple – two simple words, the first always the same, and a single stunning image: it's the follow-through which is the clincher, and which creates such compelling copy from so many enthusiastic artists. ABSOLUT SEQUEL is more than a collection of images: chapters survey the artists, the themes, and the ad campaign itself with an eye to revealing the formula behind Absolut's ad magic.

Margaret Mee's Amazon
Antique Collector's Club
116 Pleasant St. #60B, Eastampton, MA 01027
1851494545 $50.00

At once an art history, personal adventure, and fascinating biography, MARGARET MEE'S AMAZON: DIARIES OF AN ARTIST EXPLORER is profiled here for its simply gorgeous pages packed with botanical illustration and photos. Unlike most illustration titles, however, MARGARET MEE'S AMAZON isn't just a photo or illustration catalog, but an in-depth survey blending her amazing drawings with accounts of her thirty-two years of expeditions into the Amazon rainforest. Her first expedition to Amazon was in 1956, where she began the diaries and sketchbooks which comprise this title. From vivid accounts of plant-collecting expeditions to the exhibition of her paintings at the Royal Botanic Gardens in Kew (who work with Antique Collector's Club in producing this title, this is a definitive, outstanding piece holding wide-ranging interest and recommendation from art library holdings to botany collections, natural history holdings, and even the general-interest public library collection.

The Military Shelf

U.S. Army: A Complete History
Col. Raymond K. Bluhm, Jr. Editor-in-Chief
Army Historical
c/o Hugh Lauter Levin Associates
9 Burr Road, Westport, CT 06880
088363113X $75.00

Any seeking a definitive history of the U.S. army from the 1600s to modern times must have this weighty, exhaustive reference: it truly is a complete history, surveying the Army's changes and purposes during war and peace. Gorgeous color photos and drawings pack timelines of events, some as specific as for months of a given year, while army status, general participation and resignations, division commands and processes, traditions, and medals, congressional moves and more all receive notes. Any seeking a weighty history that offers at-a-glance facts and dates simply have to have U.S. ARMY: A COMPLETE HISTORY.

Helion & Company Ltd.
c/o Casemate
2114 Darby Rd., 2nd Floor, Havertown, PA 19083

These outstanding military specialty titles are recommended picks for any student of World War II. Hans Kissel's HITLER'S LAST LEVY: THE VOLKSSTURM 1944-45 (1874622515, $59.95) provides a companion to IN A RAGING INFERNO – COMBAT UNITS OF THE HITLER YOUTH, but stands well on its own as a fine account of the German Home Guard, which was formed from men unfit for military service, the young, and the old. The Guard saw extensive combat and Kissel here describes the Volkssturm's training, organization, armament and more. Translations of German documents and specialty eyewitness combat reports pair with nearly two hundred black and white photos and color uniform plates to make for an intense, detailed history. Philip S. Jowett's RAYS OF THE RISING SUN: ARMED FORCES OF JAPAN'S ASIAN ALLIES 1931-45, VOLUME 1: CHINA AND MANCHUKUO (1874622213, $59.95) is also an excellent recommendation for military collections, covering a puppet government set up in China by the Japanese and the armed forces which served this government. These 'puppet' armies were large and held over a million before 1945, and influenced the course of the Japanese war effort in China and Asia. Despised by both the Chinese and the Japanese, the troops have been largely under-represented in World War II coverages, until now. Details of their organization, training, actions, and uniform and battles make for an important study. Friedrich Georg's two-volume set HITLER'S MIRACLE WEAPONS is also an excellent recommendation for in-depth military library holdings. Volume 1, THE LUFTWAFFE AND KRIEGSMARINE (1874622914, $55.00), describes the design and research of carrier systems for the nuclear weapons the Nazis were developing. An outline of their weapons program is accompanied by a survey of the craft the Luftwaffe adapted and put into action in anticipation of their project. Volume 2 FROM THE V-2 TO THE A-9 (1874622620, $55.00) is more of an aviation title: its focus is upon the rockets and flying craft of the third Reich, and it surveys the rocket variants and German plans to utilize them against London and Paris in 1945. Each book is packed with black and white and color photos, in-depth details, specifications and descriptions, and excellent history. Duncan Rogers and Sarah Williams edit ON THE BLOODY ROAD TO BERLIN: FRONTLINE ACCOUNTS FROM NORTH-WEST EUROPE AND THE EASTERN FRONT (1874622086, $39.95), a gathering of powerful first-person accounts of the battle. From accounts from troops on all sides to editorial background information provided by the editors, you can't beat this 'you are there' collection which packs in eyewitness experience. Thorolf Hillblad's TWILIGHT OF THE GODS (1874622167, $34.95) provides a very unusual wartime account written by a Waffen-SDS soldier: it's one of the few to appear in English, originating from one of the non-German European volunteers. Originally written in Swedish and published shortly after war's end, it tells of the experiences of Swedish soldier Wallin, who volunteered for service and participated in the battles on the Eastern Front towards war's end. Wallin served in different locations in a division which gained a reputation for its combat capability: TWILIGHT OF THE GODS documents his experiences. All are highly recommended picks for specialty military collections – and 'must have' references for World War II studies.

Graphic War
Donald Nijboer
Boston Mills Press
c/o Firefly
c/o 155 East 34th St. #5B, New York NY 10016
1550464248 $49.95

World War II students interested in in-depth detail will relish GRAPHIC WAR: THE SECRET AVIATION DRAWINGS AND ILLUSTRATIONS OF WORLD WAR II: it offers information which until recently was classified and filed away in archives from Britain and the US to Germany and the Soviet Union. Artists on all sides played a major part in the war, creating visual aids vital to pilot training and the aviation industry as a whole. GRAPHIC WAR surveys artists, drawings, and how the face of the war was transformed because of their efforts. From color cut-away craft illustration to posters, schematics, charts, and other technical works, GRAPHIC WAR surveys the total impact of graphic art drawings. A recommended pick for both general collections and in-depth military holdings.

You Can't Get Much Closer Than This
A.Z. Adkins Jr. & Andrew Z. Adkins III
Casemate Publishers
2114 Darby Rd., Havertown, PA 19083
1932033289 $32.95

Andy Adkins Jr. was a Second Lieutenant and served in Company H, 80th Infantry Division during World War II: his regiment landed at Normandy in 1944 and fought they way on foot across France and into Germany. If you want a riveting, hard-hitting memoir which recreates the moment of a soldier's experience, the title says it all: YOU CAN'T GET MUCH CLOSER THAN THIS: COMBAT WITH COMPANY H, 317TH INFANTRY REGIMENT, 80TH DIVISION. First-person memories of war experience assume a 'you are there' atmosphere as the author speaks with comrades and experiences battles, rough conditions, and struggles.

W.W. Norton
500 – 5th Ave., New York NY 10110-0017

Any who would understand the effects of terrorism on free speech issues in modern times must take a look at the history provided in Geoffrey R. Stone 's PERILOUS TIMES: FREE SPEECH IN WARTIME FROM THE SEDITION ACT OF 1798 TO THE WAR ON TERRORISM (0393327450 $17.95): it provides a narrative which considers all instances in where the U.S. government has suppressed civil liberties during major periods of war. Legal and historical detail blend in a survey which comes from a professor at University of Chicago Law School, and which uses court proceedings, challenges, and legal precedent to trace the history and impact of these events. Very highly recommended indeed: a 'must' for any concerned about free speech issues in modern times – and the influence of past decisions upon the present. Kayla Williams' LOVE MY RIFLE MORE THAN YOU: YOUNG AND FEMALE IN THE U.S. ARMY (0393060985, $24.95) isn't your usual military account: it's an autobiographical account of author Williams' five years of service, including a year of deployment to Iraq during and after its invasion, and it recounts how Williams and her peers operate as specialists in military intelligence. From being a vegetarian in the military to handling men who think the army is no place for a woman, LOVE MY RIFLE MORE THAN YOU is hard-hitting, candid, and even outrageous at times. Very highly recommended.

The Great War for Civilisation
Robert Fisk
Alfred Knopf
c/o Random House
1745 Broadway, 17th floor, New York, NY 10019
1400041511 $40.00

Journalist Robert Fisk has been reporting on the Middle East for thirty years, covering nearly every major event in the region during that time: perhaps this is why his weighty THE GREAT WAR FOR CIVILISATION: THE CONQUEST OF THE MIDDLE EAST comes with such detail and authority. Bend his eyewitness accounts of the modern turmoil there with his knowledge of the region's cultures and political complexities and you have an outstanding analysis of the meaning behind newspaper events, considering the injustices which have made the Middle East a setting for near-constant wars, the influence of other countries throughout the region, and the differing religious sentiments of its inhabitants. All this would seem too weighty were it not for Fisk's own accounts of his experiences in the region: it's this combination of history and experience which keeps THE GREAT WAR FOR CIVILISATION from becoming overwhelming – and keeps it on course as a relevant survey for modern times.

War Elephants
John M. Kistler
Box 5007, Westport, CT 06881-5007
0275987612 $44.95

For over three thousand years elephants were key members of human armies from Asia to Europe: yet today many only recall Hannibal as the military man who used elephants in battle. WAR ELEPHANTS provides the full history of pachyderms in battle, presenting an animal historian's in-depth history of evidence tracing the use of elephants in battles from 1100 B.C. to the 17th century. From how the elephants participated in battle to strategies against them, WAR ELEPHANTS provides quite a different perspective and is a unique military survey.

The Computer Shelf

How to Cheat at IT Project Management
Susan Snedaker, MBA, MCSE, MCT
Nels Hoenig, Tech Editor
Syngress Press
800 Hingham St., Rockland, MA 02370
1597490377 $44.95

Where other books cover IT project basics, HOW TO CHEAT AT IT PROJECT MANAGEMENT goes a step further in showing project managers how to make sure an IT project is in line with company strategic objectives, and which will deliver the best results. Learn how to link work process to project tasks and budgets, and how to manage a team more effectively through a book which covers 'cheating' or shortcut methods to get a project back on the fast track. From when and how to report to identifying risks, HOW TO CHEAT AT IT PROJECT MANAGEMENT holds all the answers to decreasing errors and increasing returns.

1005 Gravenstein Hwy, Sebastopol CA 95472

More basic 'foundation titles' from O'Reilly are special picks for libraries seeking to build strong computer collections which won't become instantly outdated by new program versions. Jesse Liberty's PROGRAMMING VISUAL BASIC 2005 (0596009496, $39.95) is a fine introduction to writing Windows and web applications in Visual Basic. It's a quick start for coding with a difference: chapters cover the steps to building applications which tech Visual Basic language concepts and syntax as you go along: this means a working knowledge of Visual Basic is built based upon need in a progressive manner leading to advanced techniques and comprehension. Another book putting theory into practice – this one for advanced programmers – is Ken Pugh's PREFACTORING: EXTREME ABSTRACTION, EXTREME SEPARATION, EXTREME READABILITY (0596008740, $29.95): it provides software developers with insights based on author Pugh's own real-world experiences and it draws important connections between designs and real-world applications. Learn when to produce code and when to leave out troublesome lengthy versions, how to identify extreme naming problems, and how to separate policy from implementation to keep code more readable. Jim Van Meggelen, Jared Smith & Leif Madsen's ASTERISK: THE FUTURE OF TELEPHONY (0596009623, $39.95) focuses on the open source application Asterisk, which allows for flexible dial plans to support all kinds of telephony applications, from analogs and trunks to VoIP services from standard providers. Learn how to use Asterisk to set up dialplans, applications, speech synthesis and more with a guide written by Asterisk's original creator and maintainer: you can't get more authoritative than this! Robert Jones' INTERNET FORENSICS (059610006X, $39.95) examines how to use digital evidence to solve computer crimes. From fake login pages directed by email scams to mirror servers, spam and domain main similar names, INTERNET FORENSICS offers many basics on how to tell a scam online. Jim Elferdink's Iwork 05: the missing manual (059610037x, $24.95) covers Pages and Keynote 2 as it provides all the basics of how to create documents and produce presentations with iWork's latest, powerful features. Mac users receive a solid reference which will appeal to beginners and advanced users alike: particularly appealing when covering such new functions as Keynote, which has gone through a major update to make it a formidable competitor to PowerPoint. Business users, especially, will find IWORK 05: THE MISSING MANUAL an essential reference to maintaining professional standards. David Pogue's ILIFE 05: THE MISSING MANUAL (0596100361, $29.95) covers all the major features and functions of iLife: iTunes, iPhoto 5, Garage Band 2 and more. These are all key cornerstones of the Mac's popularity and here are revealed by a weekly computer columnist for the New York Times who is himself a Macintosh author. From producing polished music recordings with no prior experience to using information panels, effects panes, film rolls and other features of iLife 05, you simply can't be without this book if you own the program. The full color screen examples packed throughout make it hard to mess up. David Pogue works with Adam Goldstein on SWITCHING TO THE MAC TIGER EDITION: THE MISSING MANUAL (0596006608, $24.95), a handbook to the very different Apple operating system. You need this book even if you're an old Apple user: the Mac OS X operating system is quite different from Windows and even from prior Mac versions, and reveals all the shortcuts, design touches, and tips, tricks and traps intrinsic to successfully using and optimizing the Mac. Chapters review all the functions, from using the junk mail filter and introducing accounts to using a Bluetooth transmitter and upgrading software. Karl Fogel's PRODUCING OPEN COURSE SOFTWARE: HOW TO RUN A SUCCESSFUL FREE SOFTWARE PROJECT (0596007590, $24.95) provides advice on how to organize and run an open source software project, and comes from a developer who has worked in open source on many such projects. From providing developers with technical resources and handling communications to tracking and repairing bugs and funding open source projects, this is a treasure trove of detail highly recommended for any overseeing an open source project. Advanced users building web applications will find the latest third edition of Jesse Liberty & Dan Hurwitz's PROGRAMMING ASP.NET (059600916X, $49.95) provides a fine hands-on introduction to both ASP.NET 2.0 and Visual Studio 2005, with an eye to moving into productive solutions as quickly as possible. From using Master pages to create web site consistency to understanding rendering methods and custom control properties, handling Cache dependencies, and populating on demand, PROGRAMMING ASP.NET covers all the functions essential to quick and efficient applications. Chris DiBona, Danese Cooper and Mark Stone edit OPEN SOURCES 2.0: THE CONTINUING EVOLUTION (0596008023, $29.95), a collection of essays from today's tech leaders exploring open source's impact on the software industry. Open source is network-enabled distributed collaboration that holds the potential of changing not only online business itself, but the nature of collaboration. Articles address the future of open source in essays that cover not just the developing technology but the participation of international communities. A 'must' for any interested in open source who would understand its ongoing evolution and potential.

ESRI Press
380 New York St., Redlands, CA 92373-8100

Winnie Tang and Jan Selwood's SPATIAL PORTALS: GATEWAYS TO GEOGRAPHIC INFORMATION (1589481313, $29.95) tells how new 'spatial portals' link technology with geographic to affect daily lives. Government systems and other organizations hold information which can help consumers and businesses alike evaluate options and make good decisions: case studies, examples and visual surveys of such geographic information provide both students and decision makers with a review of spatial portals and how they are changing our lives. Cynthia A. Brewer's DESIGNING BETTER MAPS: A GUIDE FOR GIS USERS (1589480899, $24.95) covers the latest advances in GIS mapping software which have led a growing number of people without cartographic training to make use of new systems and map offerings. There's a bad side to the story, though: there's a dearth of poorly designed, inaccurate maps which obscure efforts to understand – so DESIGNING BETTER MAPS is written for those without cartography training who still need to know how to create and understand maps for their work. From understanding scale bars and legends to choosing the right map layout for a purpose, DESIGNING BETTER MAPS: A GUIDE FOR GIS USERS is essential to proper map illustration and information usage. Cory Fleming edits THE GIS GUIDE FOR LOCAL GOVERNMENT OFFICIALS (1589481410, $24.95), an important guide for any government official considering GIS approaches for blending the mapping technology into city or county management and analysis systems. Case studies are presented from across North America to illustrate successful applications of GIS to specific government needs, from monitoring weather to fixing potholes. From how GIS works to implementation challenges, THE GIS GUIDE FOR LOCAL GOVERNMENT OFFICIALS is a 'must have'.

Linux Debugging & Performance Tuning
Steve Best
Prentice Hall Press
One Lake St., Upper Saddle River, NJ 07458
0131492470 $49.99

Learn how to debug Linux code at both kernel and application levels through a hands-on tutorial which covers all kinds of performance optimization issues. From cache misses and memory management issues to network performance and dump analysis from crashes, LINUX DEBUGGING AND PERFORMANCE TUNING TIPS AND TECHNIQUES is packed with real-world examples, with screen shots and code lists helping explain debugging logic and procedures. Highly recommended for any Linux systems administrator involved in debugging processes.

Adobe Press
c/o Peachpit Press, Inc.
1249 Eighth Street, Berkeley, CA 94710 1-800-283-9444

Two new guides provide excellent JavaScript References for CS2 users working with the programs. ADOBE ILLUSTRATOR CS2 (032141294X, $39.99) provides the programmer with a complete reference for JavaScript objects and properties defined by Illustrator CS2. From basic and advance scripting techniques tailored to Illustrator CS2 to textpath properties, GradientStops properties, and more, the JavaScript reference holds all the keys to working effectively with Adobe Illustrator CS2. ADOBE PHOTOSHOP CS2 (0321409701, $39.99) achieves the same for Photoshop CS2, showing how to automate CS2 workflow by using the Javascript objects and methods defined by Adobe CS2. All the utilities and tools in ExtendScript are covered, as well as value types, techniques, and definitions. Charts, screen shots, object properties for Window and layout, and more all receive excellent technical discussions. Both are highly recommended as basic picks for any working with JavaScript and these two applications. Jan Kabili and Colin Smith's HOW TO WOW: PHOTOSHOP CS2 FOR THE WEB (0321303945, $39.99) is outstanding: it presents the in-depth tips from two professional graphic designer/trainers who have developed a method for combining quality, flexibility and speed with web graphic creation based on Photoshop CS2. Their program teaches all the fundamentals for building more effective sites, building upon basics to move to more advanced topics such as animation. A companion cd-rom disc includes all the original designs used in the project-building HOW TO WOW, along with styles, actions and pattern presets. A 'must' for any owner of Photoshop CS2 who is serious about building the better web site.

Build Your Own Standards Compliant Website Using Dreamweaver 8
Rachel Andrew
Sitepoint Pty Ltd.
424 Smith St. Collingwood, VIC Australia 3066
0975240234 $39.95

You don't have to be a professional programmer to produce an accessible, acceptable web site using Dreamweaver 8: all that's required is a working knowledge of the program and Rachel Andrew's BUILD YOUR OWN STANDARDS COMPLIANT WEBSITE USING DREAMWEAVER 8. It's a step-by-step guide which begins with setting preferences and proceeds through the basics of accessibility, navigation links and styling, working with Dreamweaver's CSS panel, and more. One might anticipate a complex guide – but BUILD YOUR OWN STANDARDS COMPLIANT WEBSITE is easy to use, whether you're reading cover-to-cover or hopping about for a quick fix to a problem.

Degunking Windows, 2nd Edition.
Joli Ballew & Jeff Duntemann
Paraglyph Press
1238 E. Cambridge Ave., Phoenix, AZ 85006
1933097078 $24.99

The first edition of DEGUNKING WINDOWS provided a basic reference to Windows XP: the revised edition includes the extensive update Service Pack 2 and focuses on the 'gunk' remaining in this update as well as tweaking issues for Windows. Learn how to clean up and streamline PC operations, how to work faster and more efficiently with file systems, and how to boot quickly and cleanly: chapters lend to both study and referencing.

c/o Charles River Media
10 Downer Ave., Hingham, MA 02043

Both beginning and advanced programmers receive a standard collection of tips on using C++'s Standard Library feature and its Standard Template Library in common programming routines with the powerful book by Greg Reese C++ STANDARD LIBRARY PRACTICAL TIPS (1584504005 $49.95). A CD-ROM accompanies a reference offering over a hundred solutions for programs from handling different values to getting a C-style array from a vector and finding medians and modes. Tips on algorithms, containers, numerical processing and more hold plenty of examples and usage insights. A recommended, standard pick for any working regularly in C++. Chris Neuhahn and Josh Book's PROFESSIONAL SHORT FILMS WITH AUTODESK 3DS MAX (1584504153, $49.95) teaches how to use the tools in 3ds Max to create short films, from devising a story and storyboards to rigging characters and animation, using different techniques in the process, and editing to produce a polished product. An actual film, Vacant Planet: a Curious Bit of Scrap, is used as a case study and files on the accompanying DVD-ROM help users develop their own stories for an animated tale. You have to have prior 3ds Max basics down to benefit: this is for the user who wants to move on to more professional pursuits in the short film format.

Digital Gameplay
Nate Garrelts, Edition
McFarland & Company
Box 611, Jefferson, NC 28640
0786422920 $35.00

DIGITAL GAMEPLAY isn't another game programmer's handbook, but a collection of scholarly, college-level essays on the topic of digital games with a survey of the role of the game. Fifteen essays discuss how players interact with games – essential information for programmers to know – and survey both physical and mental aspects of playing. While video games are also included, any game programmer will find discussions of how games are perceived and used by players to be important considerations in organizing and developing routines.

The Cult of iPod
Leander Kahney
No Starch Press
555 DeHaro St., San Francisco, CA 94107
1593270666 $24.95

Fans of the CULT OF MAC book will find equally absorbing Leander Kahney's new look at how the iPod is revolutionizing all kinds of information. A history of the iPod's development and marketing is accompanied by colorful cultural insights and examples of iPod's vast changes to music culture and file sharing. Any interested in making, marketing or listening to music must consider THE CULT OF IPOD: it's an eye-opening look at how the iPod itself has changed the nature of music.

AutoCad 2006 and AutoCad LT 2006
David Frey
c/o Sybex
1151 Marina Village Parkway, Alameda, CA 94501
0782144144 $34.99

AUTOCAD 2006 AND AUTOCAD LT 2006: NO EXPERIENCE REQUIRED is a fine, basic introduction to a powerful program which once commanded the attention only of professionals. Any seeking to utilize the CAD software should have this manual in hand: it provides a set of tutorials which are sequentially arranged for step-by-step study – but it also can be used as an at-a-glance reference sourcebook for solving specific problems. From understanding coordinate systems and drawing routines to working with fills, text, external references and more, AutoCAD's powerful tools and drawing features are all detailed in depth.

Service-Oriented Architecture Compass
Norbert Bieberstein,
IBM Press
c/o Pearson Technology Group
801 East 96th Street, #300, Indianapolis, IN 46240-3759
0131870025 $44.99

The IBM Enterprise Integration Team experts provide a comprehensive guide to planning, using and managing Service-Oriented Architecture, helping business readers migrate to SOA by sharing best practices and lessons gained from projects and development efforts. From considering SOA's impact and importance in the business environment to SOA design, analysis, security and integration into other systems, chapters provide technical and detailed software engineering information based on models, services and activities in real world situations.

My Job Went to India
Chad Fowler
Pragmatic Bookshelf
0976694018 $19.95

Any working in the computer industry knows outsourcing overseas is a big trend – and MY JOB WENT TO INDIA (AND ALL I GOT WAS THIS LOUSY BOOK): 52 WAYS TO SAVE YOUR JOB is a vital survey of how an employed computer person's active job can vanish overseas tomorrow. The company changes, technology changes, economy changes – and ways a computer professional can add value to his job has also changed. If you haven't adapted – MY JOB WENT TO INDIA is for you: it's about making choices in skills levels which add value to a job which can't easily be duplicated for less, overseas – and it talks about both skills and marketing services. A top-rated pick, MY JOB WENT TO INDIA is recommended beyond the computer industry for any observing the outsourcing trend.

The Sports Shelf

Willie Mays
Mary Kay Linge
Greenwood Press
Box 5007, Westport, CT 06881-5007
0313334013 $29.95

For a solid biography of baseball's great, look no further than Mary Kay Linge's WILLIE MAYS: A BIOGRAPHY: it covers everything from his segregated childhood in Birmingham Alabama to how he became the first black team captain in baseball, then moved up to become a world-famous player. From his army stint to his championship season, WILLIE MAYS captures all the highlights of his career and life.

Sports Publishing LLC
804 N. Neil St., Champaign, IL 61820

The 1985 Chicago Bears set a standard for success by dominating the NFL season and holding a 15-1 record: learn from their achievement in Mike Ditka and Rick Telander's IN LIFE, FIRST YOU KICK ASS: REFLECTIONS ON THE 1985 BEARS AND WISDOM FROM DA COACH (1582619778 $24.95). Wisdom to be gained from the head coach author includes team interactions, how to handle stress and turmoil, power struggles between management and players, and more. Readers looking for football history will find plenty of memories and recollections of players and notable moments in Coach Ditka's memoir of the season – but also plenty of strategy insights and reflections on the wider sport of life. Jerry Reynolds and Don Drysdale's REYNOLDS REMEMBERS: 25 YEARS WITH THE SACRAMENTO KINGS (1596701374, $19.95) is for any interested in the evolution of a shortstring operation which couldn't compete to a model NBA franchise. THE KINGS are celebrating their 20th season in Sacramento, California – and Jerry Reynolds was part of them before their rise to fame. His memoir celebrates their growth and provides a powerful leader's first-person experiences. Jerry Tarkanian's RUNNIN' REBEL WITH DAN WETZEL: SHARK TALES OF 'EXTRA BENEFITS', FRANK SINATRA, AND WINNING IT ALL (1596700181, $24.95) presents a college coach's autobiography but offers a contrary format; for Tarkanian considers himself not a 'coach' per say but a 'teacher of young men', and his colorful national championship years are packed with controversy and color. RUNNIN' REBEL reveals college sports from an insider's unabashed viewpoint, offering candid discussions of the politics and issues underlying the sport and revealing how he beat the NCAA out of 2.5 million. Chutzpah and charm packs RUNNIN' REBEL with color. Dennis Rodman works with Jack Isenhour in I SHOULD BE DEAD BY NOW (1596700165, $24.95), the vivid story of a flamboyant former basketball star who has remained a key figure in the sports world. His autobiography follows his struggles after he stopped playing in the NBA, from personal challenges to his hope to make a comeback. Roy Gleason tells his story to Wallace Wasinack and Mark Langill in LOST IN THE SUN: ROY GLEASON'S ODYSSEY FROM THE OUTFIELD TO THE BATTLEFIELD (1582619441, 24.95), an account of one who was the only person to serve in Vietnam and play at least one game in the major leagues. Roy was the only player from his era to be drafted and sent to war: LOST IN THE SUN tells why, and also provides both wartime and game insights in a 'you are there' gripping autobiography.

Bold Ruler
Edward L. Brown
c/o Eclipse Press
PO Box 919003, Lexington, KY 40591-9003
Natl Book Network, distributor.
4501 Forbes Blvd. #200, Lanham, MD 20706
1581501307 $24.95 1-800-582-5604

The horse Bold Ruler was a star of the 1950s: one of the best of a generation of racehorses who participated in the memorable 1957 Triple Crown season. His story is recounted in a vivid memoir which follows the sport of horse racing overall, revealing Bold Ruler's championship runs and riders. With black and white photos adding excitement, BOLD RULER is a thoroughbred legend account which reads with all the drama of fiction and is a highly recommended pick for any horse racing fan.

Fishing Guides
Publishers Design Group
Box 37, Roseville, CA 95678

Fishermen who travel to hot spots will find these exceptional destination-oriented guides to fishing all species in the best locations possible. Rene Limeres and Gunnar Pedersen's ALASKA FISHING: THE ULTIMATE ANGLER'S GUIDE, DELUXE 3RD EDITION (1929170114, $34.95) is a 'must' for any angler planning a journey to Alaska. All species, all methods, and all areas throughout Alaska – over 300 of them – are covered along with plenty of charts, illustrations, species and access notes, and much more. If California's the destination you can't go wrong with Ken Jones' PIER FISHING IN CALIFORNIA: THE COMPLETE COAST AND BAY GUIDE, 2ND EDITION (1929170092, $29.95): it packs in over 500 pages of comprehensive information on over a hundred California piers perfect for fishing, from the Delta to Long Beach, and covers species, conditions, fishing tips, history, and facilities. Both aren't for the casual fisherman as much as for the avid angler who plans a trip around the best fishing holes.

Bode: Go Fast, Be Good, Have Fun
Bode Miller & Jack McEnany
Villard Books
c/o Random House Trade Group
1745 Broadway, 17th floor, New York, NY 10019
1400062357 $24.95 1-800-726-0600

2005 overall world cup champion Bode Miller was raised in New Hampshire in a rural cabin without electricity or indoor plumbing, so his roots are as unconventional as his rise to become a top sports star. GO FAST, BE GOOD, HAVE FUN is an autobiography which recounts his philosophy in life as much as his sports experience: he tells of the world of competitive skiing and how he bucked conventional wisdom to rise to the top, and his personal theories shine brightly throughout. GO FAST, BE GOOD, HAVE FUN is packed with first-person 'you are there' adventure and insights: paired with Miller's personal formula for success, it's as much a winner as he is.

Crashing the Borders
Harvey Araton
Free Press
1230 Avenue of Americas, New York NY 10020
0743280695 $25.00

Basketball fans will find a vibrant and unusual story in CRASHING THE BORDERS: HOW BASKETBALL WON THE WORLD AND LOST ITS SOUL AT HOME: it tells how talented players from around the world are playing at a level which challenges American pros, and how the sport is simultaneously facing a troubled image on its own home turf. Relations between players and fans are at a low point, TV ratings for NBA games are on the decline, and basketball fan Harvey Araton, sports columnist for the New York Times, here traces the problem to the greed of those who would exploit the game and thus weaken it. Fans will find this a hard-hitting account that pulls no punches.

Beyond the Lion's Den
Ken Shamrock & Erich Krauss
Tuttle Publishing
364 Innovation Dr., N. Clarendon, VT 05759-9436
0804836590 $29.95

Ken Shamrock is a legendary martial artist and fighting champion best known perhaps for his WWF superstar fame: there's no better place to learn about his competitions and the stories behind them than in his autobiographical BEYOND THE LION'S DEN: THE LIFE, THE FIGHTS, THE TECHNIQUES. Packed with color photos throughout, BEYOND THE LION'S DEN captures not just the high points of Shamrock's career, but provides plenty of movement-by-movement discussions of basic fighting techniques which lend to martial arts lessons.

The Homeowner's Shelf

Hannah's Art of Home Life
Hannah Keeley
Capital Books Inc.
Box 605, Herndon, VA 20172-0605
1931868824 $17.95

Author Hannah Keeley is the founder of a line of baby spa products, the publisher of an online family magazine, and holds a degree in psychology – as well as home-schooling six kids. Her HANNAH'S ART OF HOME: MANAGING YOUR HOME AROUND YOUR PERSONALITY offers a personality test linked to home atmosphere. Learn how the test relates to clutter, organizational patterns, cleaning and decorating choices in a handbook which offers de-cluttering, cleaning, organization and decorating hints for every room of the house.

The Complete Clutter Solution
Good Housekeeping
c/o Sterling Publishing Company
387 Park Avenue South, New York, NY 10016-8810
1588164535 $19.95 1-800-805-5489

If your house organization is perpetually 'clutter' mode and you lack the organizational skills to do anything but clean up once or twice a year, THE COMPLETE CLUTTER SOLUTION: ORGANIZE YOUR HOME FOR GOOD is for you. A room-by-room guide broken down into zones shows not only how to de-clutter, but how much time will be involved. Involve other family members in maintaining the structure created in THE COMPLETE CLUTTER SOLUTION and benefit from discussions of organizational bins, hangers and other special tips in a fine guide to eliminating clutter through creating convenient storage alternatives.

The Urban Loft
Martin Myers
Fitzhenry & Whiteside Ltd.
121 Harvard Ave. #2, Allston, MA 02134
1550418394 $24.95

Loft dwellers who dream of living in a loft and who have to start from scratch will appreciate THE URBAN LOFT: CREATING A DREAM SPACE IN THE CITY: it will appeal to architects, renovators, designers or the builder or re-builder and provides both tips on how to build a loft and advice on what not to do. Chapters consider the construction and organization of the loft environment and provide plenty of details on what works, what doesn't, and why.

Gibbs Smith
Box 667, Layton, UT 84041

Douglas Keister's COURTYARDS: INTIMATE OUTDOOR SPACES (1586855409 $39.95) takes a rare look at the function, definition and purpose of a courtyard surveying courtyards around the world which grace both home and public establishment. Courtyards can be adapted to both large and small spaces, vary in greenery, stonework, and lighting, and are perfect additions for homeowners seeking to remodel with style. Turn a backyard into a courtyard setting or consider many options through the phone color exhibition of photographer Keister, paired with text which considers design options and successful examples. Paula Baker-Laporte & Robert Laporte's ECO NEST: CREATING SUSTAINABLE SANCTUARIES OF CLAY, STRAW, AND TIMBER (158685691X, $24.95) surveys and contrasts different methods of green building which avoid the typical troubles of conventional building methods, from pollution and chemical usage to inefficient synthetic insulation. From design details to take advantage of solar energy to choices in lighting, entryways, and architectural design, ten selected 'dream homes' are presented. Full-page color photos of interiors and exteriors compliment design plans and first-person insights by the owner-builders on what makes each home a work of art – and an ecologically sustainable structure.

Home Enlightenment
Annie B. Bond
Rodale Press
400 – 10th St., Emmaus, PA 18098-0099
1579548113 $27.95

If 'home' means more to you than a roof over your head, and you seek to create a nurturing, toxin-free atmosphere and lifestyle within its walls, then HOME ENLIGHTENMENT is for you: it provides an encyclopedia of natural living which covers everything from animal dander and water management to lighting, fire, mercury concerns, laundry and fabric health, and more. It's rare to see a guide on home systems so attentive to overall health concerns: HOME ENLIGHTENMENT's wide-ranging details on creating and maintaining a healthy environment makes it a unique, top pick.

Got Sun? Go Solar
Rex A. Ewing & Doug Pratt
PixyJack Press
Box 149, Masonville, CO 80541
0965809870 $18.95

Are you connected to the grid but seeking independence from high energy bills? Looking to harness solar and wind power? Plenty of other books have surveyed the benefits of renewable energy or systems; but this is one of the few to add simplicity into the formula to make it possible for novices to convert. Chapters tell how to power an existing grid-tied home with renewable sources and how to make the conversion at minimum expense. From understanding a home's big energy wasters and how to contemplate either doing without or doing with less to sizing a system, obtaining permits for installations, and considering the pros and cons of manufacturers, GOT SUN? GO SOLAR is a winning guide: specific where others just generalize.

Complete Guide to Building Your Home For Less
Michael Conroy
c/o F&W Publications, Inc.
700 East State Street, Iola, WI 54990
1558707697 $19.99 1-800-726-9966

Builder and author Michael Conroy has built many a home for only $43 per square foot: half the national average; and his secrets of construction point the way for similar savings for owner/builders in THE COMPLETE GUIDE TO BUILDING YOUR HOME FOR LESS. From choosing economical materials and simplifying floor plans to buying undervalued land and learning how to follow building codes, this book is the item of choice for any who would do some of the work themselves and understand where to trim costs without trimming quality.

Frank J. La Mar
Windstorm Creative
Box 28, Port Orchard, WA 98366
1590920368 $9.99

People just starting out and those seeking to downsize and reduce homeowner maintenance often opt for condos as less expensive options: before you sign on the dotted line, be aware of the pros and cons through CONDOMINIUMS: THE PROS AND CONS OF OWNERSHIP. From their rules, restrictions and resale/marketability potentials to repairs, damage, and governing board rules, CONDOMINIUMS: THE PROS AND CONS OF OWNERSHIP covers it all using simple language any potential buyer will readily understand, making it essential and highly recommended reading for anyone considering acquiring a condominium for their residence.

The Gardening Shelf

The Complete Houseplant Survival Guide
Barbara Pleasant
210 Mass MoCa Way, N. Adams, MA 01247
1580175694 $24.95

So many houseplant guides glut the market that it may initially seem difficult to see the need for yet another – but here's something different, offering color photos, a plant ID guide to help those who receive 'mystery houseplants' as gifts, details on low-maintenance plants, and an A-Z of care basics for quick and easy access. Brighter and more detailed than most, THE COMPLETE HOUSEPLANT SURVIVAL GUIDE helps buyers choose the plant which is perfect for environment and care demands.

Fields of Plenty
Michael Ableman
Chronicle Books
85 – 2nd St., San Francisco, CA 94105
0811842231 $35.00

American agriculture is being re-created and re-defined by farmers and the people who grow our food, and Michael Ableman's journey to different farms blends a memoir of a farmer and photographer with a travelogue of his survey of others who are making a difference in the food world from across America. The different visions and experiences of farmers blend with discussions of politics, growing, and even with recipes for using fresh produce, making FIELDS OF PLENTY an abundant gathering of crop wisdom and agricultural insights. Scholarly enough for college-level collections on agricultural studies yet accessible enough for public library holdings, FIELD OF PLENTY: A FARMER'S JOURNEY IN SEARCH OF REAL FOOD AND THE PEOPLE WHO GROW IT is an excellent pick indeed.

All Flesh is Grass
Gene Logsdon
c/o Ohio University Press
Scott Quadrangle, #226, Athens, OH 45701
0804010692 $18.95 1-800-621-2736

ALL FLESH IS GRASS: THE PLEASURES AND PROMISES OF PASTURE FARMING is for any interested in American agriculture's history and directions. Author Gene Logsdon believes pastoral farming is a solution for a stressed agricultural system, and explains different techniques and practices past and present which hold the potential for changing and benefitting farming. His own experience as a 'contrary farmer' on his small-scale farm provides a foundation of experience for his tips.

The Interior Design Shelf

Interior Desecrations
James Lileks
Three Rivers Press
c/o The Crown Publishing Group
1745 Broadway, #B1, New York, NY 10019-4305
0307238725 $18.00 1-800-726-0600

The worst of 1970s interior decoration ideas is gathered from magazines, books and pamphlets to prove the era was a grim design period indeed, making INTERIOR DESECRATIONS: HIDEOUS HOMES FROM THE HORRIBLE 70S an example of what bad taste can look like. From overwhelming 'green crap' to candid assessments of bad style ("I have this horrible vision: it's day one of Alexander Solzhenitsyn's exile in America, and this is where they put him up."), INTERIOR DESECRATIONS is a winning commentary on poor taste.

Dream Homes
Andreas von Einsiedel & Johanna Thornycroft
49 W. 24th St., 8th Floor, New York NY 10010
1858942977 $39.95

For an outstanding sourcebook of interiors which stand out from the many, DREAM HOMES: 100 INSPIRATIONAL INTERIORS is an exceptional purchase recommended for any discriminating art library strong in interior design titles. No single style represents a 'dream home': it can be Mediterranean, Californian, Asian or a blend. A hundred examples of perfection in all areas are culled from homes of all styles from around the world, presenting the work of the planet's most talented interior designers. There are over 800 lovely color photos of these spaces, plus in-depth explanations by design expert Johanna Thornycroft, which explains how each home was created or transformed. A rich, gorgeous presentation of many examples.

Spectacular Walls!
Jeanine Dostal
North Light Books
c/o F&W Publications
4700 E. Galbraith Rd., Cincinnati, OH 45236
1581807279 $24.99

By adding texture and embellishments to walls you can have spectacular results both original and tasteful as well as artistic – and you needn't be a painter to achieve this. SPECTACULAR WALLS: CREATIVE EFFECTS USING TEXTURE, EMBELLISHMENT AND PAINT shows how, using a step-by-step visual approach and covering everything from materials and supplies to have on hand to tips on using paint, coating, drawing and preparations. Oversized pages and many color photos make for a winning display, making SPECTACULAR WALLS a welcome and highly recommended addition to personal and community library do-it-yourself home improvement reference collections.

Color, Create, Decorate
Shannon Quimby
Emmis Books
1700 Madison Rd., Cincinnati, OH 45206
1578602076 $19.95

Nearly thirty step-by-step home projects are outlined in over a hundred color photos and provide a more relaxed approach to developing a home style. Don't expect a major guide to repainting the place: it's a decorator's handbook which uses plenty of easy embellishments for its enhancements, from turning vintage hats into unique lampshades to using a wall purse to help organize. Quimby's COLOR, CREATE, DECORATE: CREATIVE, FRESH IDEAS & DECORATING TECHNIQUES advocates exploring outside the color world norm and taking risks to develop unique style – and advises on how to make it work.

The Money/Finance Shelf

Pocket Idiot's Guide Reverse Mortgages
Jennifer A. Pokorny
c/o Penguin Publishing Group
375 Hudson, New York NY 10014
1592573770 $9.95

If you want to supplement retirement income a reverse mortgage seems a good option, many say: but how exactly is the right one obtained? Learn how reverse mortgages work with POCKET IDIOT'S GUIDE TO REVERSE MORTGAGES, which explains all the basics using simple language and an easy at-a-glance pocket format. From different kinds of mortgages such as conversion mortgages to understanding property appraisals, if you want an easy explanation of all the options, this one's for you.

Profit from Your Vacation Dream Home
Dearborn Trade
30 S. Wacker Dr. #2500, Chicago, IL 60606-7481
1419506919 $19.95

Owners of a home who dream of owning a second home for vacation purposes might have thought of the possibility as a dream for the rich, but PROFIT FROM YOUR VACATION HOME DREAM: THE COMPLETE GUIDE TO A SAVVY FINANCIAL AND EMOTIONAL INVESTMENT tells otherwise: it holds the potential of being a wise move on several fronts, and provides the basics on how such a home can pay for itself when not in use by its owners. From how to rent a vacation home to a formula for successful vacation home ownership, this tells how to evaluate properties, weigh pros and cons, determine what's needed to break even on the investment, and even how to work with property management companies.

The Social Issues Shelf

Gone Tomorrow
Heather Rogers
New Press
38 Greene St., New York NY 10013
1565848799 $23.95

The U.S. is the top producer of garbage on the planet, generating 30% of the world's trash and throwing out 1600 pounds per American per year – but what happens to garbage after it's in the trash? GONE TOMORROW: THE HIDDEN LIFE OF GARBAGE focuses on the answers to this question, providing journalist Heather Rogers' history of rubbish handling from the 1800s to modern times and reviewing the politics and social issues revolving around trash management policies. Technological transformations affected the nature and quantity of household garbage, postwar innovations handled more volume, and industry changes changed the nature and motivation of cartels handling garbage: GONE TOMORROW explores all these facets and more.

Drunk the Night Before
Marty Roth
University of Minnesota Press
111 Third Ave. South #290, Minneapolis, MN 55401-2520
0816643970 $29.95

College-level students of social and health issues will find DRUNK THE NIGHT BEFORE: AN ANATOMY OF INTOXICATION provides a strong cultural history of convivial drinking before the idea of drink as an addiction overcame alcohol's reputation as a creative and even a spiritual force. DRUNK THE NIGHT BEFORE focuses on the overall human history of drink from ancient times to the 20th century, following its treatment in the arts, religion, and through society. Alcohol holds a mixed history, being viewed as both miracle potion and as a poison: DRUNK THE NIGHT BEFORE reveals both aspects of alcohol's history.

Spoken Here
Mark Abley
Houghton Mifflin
222 Berkeley St., Boston, MA 02116
0618565833 $14.00

It's difficult to know where best to review SPOKEN HERE: TRAVELS AMONG THREATENED LANGUAGES: as a travelogue it holds much to attract leisure armchair traveler audiences; as a linguistics coverage it invites the attention of college-level English majors. Both audiences will find Mark Abely's survey of the world's endangered tongues to be revealing, with chapters moving from the Arctic Circle through North America to Australia as Abley visits the exotic locales which harbor fading languages and reveals the lives of their last speakers. An intriguing survey.

Complicity: How the North Promoted, Prolonged, and Profited From Slavery
Anne Farrow, Joel Lang & Jenifer Frank
Ballantine Books
1745 Broadway, New York NY 10019
0345467825 $25.95

If you think you know American history and the history of slavery quite well, think again: COMPLICITY: HOW THE NORTH PROMOTED, PROLONGED, AND PROFITED FROM SLAVERY will challenge almost every belief you've held and introduce many starting new thoughts. The truth is, the history of slavery has been rewritten since the Civil War: whitewashed and glossed over. The North's shameful secrets come fully to light in COMPLICITY, which proves the North's own economic structure was as dependent on slavery profits as the South. This startling expose is a 'must' for any definitive American history collection, whether it be for a high school or college library or for a public library collection.

The Spoken Word Revolution
Mark Eleveld, Ed.
Media Fusion
c/o Sourcebooks
Box 4410, Naperville, IL 60567-4410
1402202466 $16.95

Poetry has moved into a new world, as THE SPOKEN WORD REVOLUTION (SLAM, HIP HOP & THE POETRY OF A NEW GENERATION) reveals. An audio cd accompanying written word captures some of the nuances of this world, focusing on the power of poetry performed out loud around the world. From new styles such as slam and Taos to poems by Regie Gibson, Viggo Mortensen and Saul Williams, be ready to learn about radical new styles of spoken word which blend poetry with social insights.

Suntanning in 20th Century America
Kerry Segrave
McFarland & Company
Box 611, Jefferson, NC 28640
0786423943 $35.00

The suntan was considered a mark of the lower class for hundreds of years but was resurrected in America as a fad in the 1920s and remains popular today. While the myth remains that the evolution of the tanning trend had its source in fashion, it in fact was lauded by doctors as a panacea for all kinds of ailments until the dangers of overexposure became known. Any interested in the social, fashion or medical history of sun tanning in America will find Kerry Segrave provides an intriguing history and plenty of vintage black and white photos to add interest.

Dressing Renaissance Florence
Carole Collier Frick
Johns Hopkins University Press
2715 N. Charles St., Baltimore, MD 21218-4319
0801882648 $25.00

It's surprising to note that professor Carole Collier Frick's DRESSING RENAISSANCE FLORENCE: FAMILIES, FORTUNES AND FINE CLOTHING is the first in-depth study of the Renaissance fashion industry. Here are insights into the social and political meaning of clothing in Florence, with black and white photos throughout displaying changing styles and fashion innovations, visual impressions and how family fortunes were invested in wardrobes. A fascinating college-level study, recommended for any collection strong in fashion or Renaissance history.

The Argumentative Indian
Amartya Sen
Farrar, Straus, Giroux
19 Union Square West, New York, NY 10003
0374105839 $26.00

Any interested in Indian history or culture will find THE ARGUMENTATIVE INDIAN: WRITINGS ON INDIAN HISTORY, CULTURE AND IDENTITY is essential to understanding the culture, customs, viewpoints and identity of modern India. It considers India's rich long argumentative tradition, its traditions of skepticism and questioning, and its philosophies from ancient to modern times. Any interested in Indian tradition who would understand its spirituality, culture, literature or politics must understand its argumentative tradition: no better in-depth coverage is available than THE ARGUMENTATIVE INDIAN.

We Changed the World
Sidney Pike
Paragon House
1925 Oakcrest Ave. #7, St. Paul, MN 55113-2619
1557788553 $24.95

The introduction of CNN's 24-hour cable news channel in 1980 changed the world of television, with satellite and cable providing a strong competitive alternative to tradition TV – and author Sidney pike was in the middle of the revolution, here explored in his WE CHANGED THE WORLD: MEMOIRS OF A CNN SATELLITE PIONEER. Pike met with media and government leaders around the world trying to sell CNN programming, and was an early pioneer for the global television channels we know today. His memoir provides a first-person review of obstacles, achievements, challenges, and a rapidly-changing industry under transition to this day.

Campus Legends
Elizabeth Tucker
Greenwood Press
Box 5007, Greenwood, CT 06881-5007
0313332851 $55.00

Students have told stories about their daily university lives and often created legends surrounding campus experiences: unique and intriguing is CAMPUS LEGENDS: A HANDBOOK, which surveys legends ranging from pure fantasy to theories of professor relationships, pranks, rituals and other folklore. While it may prove an unusual handbook for the general collection, any college-level collection strong in folktales will find it refreshingly different and worthy of acquisition.

Prometheus Books
59 John Glenn Dr., Amherst, NY 14228-2197

Any who would understand Islam's history and culture must have a copy of Andrew G. Bostom, MD, Editor 's THE LEGACY OF JIHAD: ISLAMIC HOLY WAR AND THE FATE OF NON-MUSLIMS (1591023076 $28.00): it provides a weighty, comprehensive coverage of Muslim theological and juridical texts, eyewitness historical accounts by both Muslims and non-Muslims, and essays by scholars analyzing militaristic jihad imposed on non-Muslims. History, cultural and religious insights blend in a scholarly, college-level survey of jihad's origins, enactment, and purposes. Very highly recommended: a cut above any competing title in depth and coverage. Top journalists speak out about changing civil liberties and media reporting in Kristian Borjesson's collection FEET TO THE FIRE: THE MEDIA AFTER 9/11 (1591023432, $25.00). Borjesson's expose INTO THE BUZZSAW revealed efforts to quash the public's right to know the truth; her FEET TO THE FIRE here provides conversations with top journalists and news executives about the media companies, the Bush administration, war coverage and more. Each interviews presents details from national security and intelligence reporters, world news journalists, and others who provide different views of how truths are hidden since 9/11.

The Greatest Generation Grows Up
Kriste Lindenmeyer
Ivan R. Dee
1332 N. Halsted St., Chicago, IL 60622-2694
1566636604 $27.50

American childhood in the 1930s became a government policy ideal which was reinforced by cultural changes during the Great Depression, and represented the first period of time in which the federal government provided a legal definition of childhood dependency as extending from birth through age seventeen. Any studying children's rights or American childhood will want to make THE GREATEST GENERATION GROWS UP: AMERICAN CHILDHOOD IN THE 1930S a part of their reading reference collection: it details social and political forces which shaped, defined and created new interpretations of childhood and dependency.

My Love Affair With the French
Fannie Lillian Miles Bellamy
701 Smithfield, 3rd Floor, Pittsburgh, PA 15222-3906
0805966463 $23.00

Fannie Bellamy grew up in rural Virginia under segregation and discovered some deep bonds with France and the French people early on in life: her account tells of her journey from rural Virginia to college and on to travels to France in search of the French tradition. A lively first-person account of a fine adventure., "My Love Affair With The French" is a thoroughly engaging, inherently fascinating, superbly written memoir and highly recommended for community library American Biography collections.

Messages to the World
Bruce Lawrence
180 Varick St., New York NY 10014-4606
1844670457 $16.95

Osama Bin Laden's statements have been widely covered in TV and radio in bits and pieces; but they haven't been gathered together under one cover before; so to receive a unified presentation of all his admonitions, turn to MESSAGES TO THE WORLD: THE STATEMENTS OF OSAMA BIN LADEN. Statements issued in his name over the last ten years are here newly translated from the Arabic and annotated with a critical introduction by editor Lawrence, an Islamic scholar, which adds historical, political and religious context to the statements. Any who want insights on Bin Laden's thoughts and viewpoint must have MESSAGES TO THE WORLD.

Heather Chaplin & Aaron Ruby
Algonquin Books
127 Kingston Dr. #105, Chapel Hill, NC 27514
1565123468 $24.95

The video game industry is big money these days, powered by a blend of computer geeks and business mavericks who have turned it into a big business – and SMARTBOMB: THE QUEST FOR ART, ENTERTAINMENT, AND BIG BUCKS IN THE VIDEOGAME REVOLUTION traces the history of how this country become involved in video games. Authors Heather Chaplin and Aaron Ruby went on a five-year investigation into the history and technology of the video game explosion, gaining access to design labs and business meetings alike: SMARTBOMB examines both individuals and trends in a survey of models, legends, and achievement.

Sharman Apt Russell
Basic Books
c/o Perseus Publishing Group
387 Park Avenue South, New York NY 10016
0465071635 $23.95 1-800-242-7737

HUNGER: AN UNNATURAL HISTORY could also have been featured in our Health section but is reviewed here for its important history into the nature and culture of hunger, from the fasting saints of early Christianity to modern political statements. Hunger can inspire and heal, or it can kill: chapters consider the spiritual, health, and historical and cultural aspects of human hunger to consider its impact throughout human history and events.

Flight Capital
David Heenan
Davies-Black Publishing
1055 Joaquin Rd. #200, Mountain View, CA 94043
0891062025 $24.95

For centuries the talented and intelligent around the world flocked to the U.S., which attracted immigrants with strong skills: today more than half the Ph.D.s working here are foreign born – as are half the scientists, and others. And, they are leaving to return home. FLIGHT CAPITAL: THE ALARMING EXODUS OF AMERICA'S BEST AND BRIGHTEST charts this flight, analyzing why they are leaving and what it means for America's future. FLIGHT CAPITAL also goes beyond focus on American impact to consider world trends and world impact in foreign nations, examining the initiatives other countries use to lure top talent away from the US, and how our own immigration restrictions have affected replacement efforts. Blend in case history examples of professionals who have left the US to return to their native lands and you have a thought-provoking study essential to understanding the future of immigrant talent in this nation.

John DeGraff, David Wann & Thomas Naylor
235 Montgomery St. #650, San Francisco, CA 94104-2916
1576753573 $17.95

The second edition of AFFLUENZA: THE ALL-CONSUMING EPIDEMIC will reach new audiences who might have missed one of the best nonfiction title nominees of 2001, providing updated details and healthy alternatives to the consumer oriented 'epidemic' of modern times. From shopaholics and bankruptcies to those seeking meaning in material goods, AFFLUENZA details the process of recovery from physical and cultural clutter, and offers both personal and political remedies for the problem. History, facts and insights are pointed and revealing messages addressing the modern condition.

Alaska's Hidden Wars
Otis Hays, Jr.
University of Alaska Press
Box 756240, Fairbanks, AK 99775-6240
188996364X $19.95

On the eve of World War II Japan, the US and the Soviet Union collided in the North Pacific – and ALASKA'S HIDDEN WARS: SECRET CAMPAIGNS ON THE NORTH PACIFIC RIM charts these conflicts for the first time, revealing not minor skirmishes but major campaigns which pitted Americans against the Japanese well before Pearl Harbor. ALASKA'S HIDDEN WARS tells of Japanese raids, American campaigns, and two years of air raids and bombardments in Alaska during the war. Newly declassified archives allows the story to final come to light!

Freedom of Assembly
Stephen F. Rohde
Facts on File
132 W. 31st St., 17th Floor, New York NY 10001
0816056633 $35.00

The right of people to peaceably assemble and to petition the government was granted in the First Amendment, and are most exercised by strikes, meetings or picketers: the history of this freedom, its challenges, and its major issues are traced in a new 'American Rights' addition surveying the civil right, its history, controversies, and virtual and actual assembly in modern times on the web. Maps, graphs, a chronology and source materials provide both adults and young adults with an excellent historical overview.

My China Eye
Israel Epstein
Long River Press
360 Swift Avenue, #48, South San Francisco, CA 94080
1592650422 $24.95

Journalist and war correspondent Israel Epstein's memoir spans over eighty years and offers his eyewitness account of some of the most turbulent years of this century. While MY CHINA EYE: MEMOIRS OF A JEW AND A JOURNALIST could have been featured in our more general 'biography' column, it's reviewed here for its importance as a revealing narrative by a Western journalist who experienced the Chinese Communist Revolution firsthand from its beginning. Epstein grew up in Tianjin and was exposed to social issues and left-wing movements in China at an early age. During the 1930s and 40s he reported from China and Hong Kong; during the war he was in the front lines reporting on China's War of Resistance against Japan. His dramatic account of history in the making shouldn't be missed.

Jan Martin Bang
New Society Publishers
Box 189, Gabriola Island BC, V0R 1X0 Canada
0865715386 $24.95

There's long been a movement towards living in community with others as an alternative to the nuclear family model, but in modern times 'ecovillages' have emerged around the world, adding attention to sustainability and social interactions to the model. ECOVILLAGES explores these developments, opening with a history of the movement and progressing to include a practical manual for planning and maintaining a sustainable community using permaculture as a foundation. From house design and building options to farming and handling sewage and energy sources, ECOVILLAGES is packed with practical applications; not just theory.

The Game
Neil Strauss
Regan Books
10 E. 53rd St., New York NY 10022-5299
0060554738 $29.95

Two years ago author Strauss, a writer for the Rolling Stone and New York Times, decided to investigate an exciting underground community: an international network of men devoted to the art of seduction. They weren't rich, they weren't criminals or unduly attractive – but they had success with even the most remote woman, and had a scientific set of rules which dictated their successful moves. THE GAME: PENETRATING THE SECRET SOCIETY OF PICK-UP ARTISTS is more than just an expose of an underground community: it tells of Strauss' own experiments as a single male with little personal success with women himself, and of his undercover life for two years as he works to master the Game – successfully. But THE GAME isn't autobiography either: it reveals the secrets of the Game, why its strategies work, and what women can learn from the tricks pick-up artists commonly use on women.

Bat Boy Lives!
David Perel & Editors of Weekly World News
Sterling Publishing Company
387 Park Avenue South, New York NY 10016-8810
1402728239 $12.95 1-800-805-5489

It's hard to easily categorize BAT BOY LIVES!: it's a humor title which also is based on the Weekly World News gossip publication's impossible, sensationalist headlines – and it provides tongue-in-cheek commentary on celebrities, culture, politics, alien abductions and more within its pages of 'impossible events'. Black and white photos blend with 'truths' to make for a zany presentation indeed.

We Are Iran
Nasrin Alavi
Soft Skull Press
55 Washington St. #804, Brooklyn, NY 11201
Publishers Group West, distributor
1700 Fourth Street, Berkeley, CA 94710
1933368055 $15.95 1-800-788-3123

Any who would understand the people and culture of Iran must read WE ARE IRAN: THE PERSONAL BLOGS: it gathers the country's Internet diaries and translates them from Farsi to provide quite a different view of the ordinary people's sentiments and experiences. Much of what comes to the U.S. in newspapers comes from reporters or politicians: WE ARE IRAN comes from the people – in particular, from an educated, youthful, literate segment of the country which doesn't condone Islamic fundamentalism and which is eager to embrace a new era. Supplementing these blogs is commentary on these people and their concerns, providing the background and cultural insight necessary to appreciate the voices and their place in modern Iranian society.

I Hid It Under the Sheets
Gerald Eskenazi
University of Missouri Press
2910 LeMone Blvd., Columbia, MO 65201
082621620X $29.95 1-800-828-1894

For author Gerald Eskenazi and his peers, the radio days of the 1930s through the early 1950s in America had solid impact on his generation and was a major force shaping American minds. I HID IT UNDER THE SHEETS: GROWING UP WITH RADIO captures the culture and memories of these radio programs, providing Eskenazi's personal anecdotes about the radio shows which so moved him and combining these with interviews of radio personalities of the times. What evolves is not just autobiography but a personal history of radio's approaches and impact on a generation of listeners.

When Elephants Fly
Carol Batrus
Fulcrum Publishing
16100 Table Mtn Parkway #300, Golden, CO 80403
1555915655 $15.95

South Africa was far removed from everything businesswoman executive Carol Batrus knew: so what led her to move from her high-powered, successful job on Wall Street to the heart of Zululand to help the tribe's economic development? WHEN ELEPHANTS FLY: ONE WOMAN'S JOURNEY FROM WALL STREET TO ZULULAND is a moving memoir of her journey, which was to help the tribe economically without destroying the environment. Her decision and journey is inspiring and provides plenty of insights into South African and local environmental issues.

The Fantasy/SciFi Shelf

Woken Furies
Richard K. Morgan
DelRey Books
1745 Broadway, New York NY 10019
0345479718 $24.95

Richard Morgan's prior 'Takeshi Kovacs' 25th century adventures have gained him an audience of fans, so his latest WOKEN FURIES is sure to see both old fans and new readers. Death is meaningless in Morgan's world, but mystery, revenge and love are still forces to keep even a detective on his toes. Add a strange holy man and a world which blends virtual worlds with reality and you have a fast-paced story with many unexpected twists and turns: a satisfying read, indeed.

Neil Gaiman & Dave McKean
1340 Avenue of Americas, New York NY 10019-4703
0060821094 $16.99

Helena has been raised in a family of circus performers and dreams of a normal life – until haunting music leads her far from home to a magical world where her real life is stolen. Her only hope is to rescue her new home from a threat – if she can. MirrorMask is a film: Gaiman's story here pairs with artist/director Dave McKean to provide a blend of novella and art, supplemented by images from the film. An appealing, visually vivid format is presented.

Spectrum 12 : The Best in Contemporary Fantastic Art
Cathy Fenner & Arnie Fenner, Eds.
Underwood Books
Box 1919, Nevada City, Ca 95959
1887424946 $29.95

Any interested in science fiction and fantasy art will find all the masters represented here, from Michael Whelan and Brad Holland to Linda Bergkvist and Daren Bader. Each artist's works are rendered in full color and includes contact information plus notes on clients, medium, and picture size. A jury selected the 2005 Spectrum winners, surveying over 4,000 works both individually and in light of overall fantasy artist accomplishment to cull the best: the result is a winning pick of top winners any involved in fantasy art will find compelling and superior.

Baen Books
Box 1403, Riverdale, NY 10471

John Ringo and Michael Z. Williamson's THE HERO (1416509143, $7.99) tells of a warrior species conditioned to be incapable of killing, which manipulates humans until humans fight back. Now the Darhel and humans find themselves on a race to prevent an alien artifact from falling to the wrong hands, with a deadly sniper with killing abilities facing a team unable to kill. Jack L. Chalker's TWILIGHT AT THE WELL OF SOULS (141650916X, $7.99) tells of a rift in space which is fast approaching the Well World: and if Well World is destroyed, the universe would vanish too. Despite the threat concerns about war on the planet still dominate, and it's up to two souls to save the universe, if the natives don't kill them first. James H. Schmidtz's THE WITCHES OF KARRES (14165091151, $7.99) tells of a captain unlikely in love and business who hopes for salvation from a battered starship's entrepreneurial finds. When Captain Pausert frees three slave children from their masters, he finds himself in trouble with his fiance, his world, and on the wrong side of many – all because of three innocent-looking little girls who are in fact witches. Swift action and drama evolves. Chris Dolley's RESONANCE (1416598127, $24.00) takes an old saying against stepping on cracks and adds new meaning when cracks in paving stones set the resonance that keeps everything harmonious – and stepping on them sets the universe out of sync. Graham Smith finds the world changed overnight when a resonance project changes the nature of reality and virtual reality in the gripping RESONANCE. William Mark Simmons' HABEAS CORPSES (1416509135, $22.00) continues the story of one Christopher, who becomes infected with one of two viruses that change the living into the undead. Hunted for his mutated blood by both humans and vampires, he faces assassins, a sexy vampire bodyguard, a werewolf lover's problems, and more in a fast-paced story of genetic manipulation and evil. David Weber's AT ALL COSTS (1416509119, $26.00) tells of a disastrous war with the Republic of Haven – disastrous for the Star Kingdom of Manticore, where an admiral lady and duchess is outnumbered by a new fleet. Politics and interstellar war come to life in a politically charged account of royalty and danger.

End of the Beginning
Harry Turtledove
c/o New American Library
375 Hudson, New York NY 10014
0451216687 $25.95

Turtledove specializes in alternative history scenarios and END OF THE BEGINNING is one of his best: it's set during WWII, with the Japanese following up on a successful occupation of Hawaii. A puppet king sits on the throne and American POWs are enslaved – but on the mainland the U.S. military is working to drive back the enemy. A realistic story of a very different WWII atmosphere evolves.

The World History Shelf

Dufour Editions
Box 7, Chester Springs, PA 19425

Ulster has been at the center of conflicts between Ireland and Britain for centuries: that's why a book such as Jonathan Bardon's A HISTORY OF ULSTER (085640764X $36.95) is so important to understanding the origins of conflicts. Nine thousand years of social, political and economic changes from the Viking invasions to modern times are documented in a title first published in 1992 and here updated to add events since. A 'must' for any collection serious about Irish history. Sean Beecher's CORK 365: A DAY-BY-DAY MISCELLANY OF CORK HISTORY (1903464927, $21.95) is also a recommended pick for Irish fans: it's a personal selection of history, humorous events, and cultural insights set in diary form from January to December with a historical insight per page. The organization lends to leisure browsing and casual enjoyment, and fun. Brian Lalor's THE IRISH ROUND TOWER: ORIGINS AND ARCHITECTURE EXPLORED (1903464773, $32.95) may be a specialty item, but any with an interest in the unique round towers which survive in Ireland today must have this book. There are about 70 such towers scattered across the countryside and represent the only form of architecture which is unique to Ireland alone. There's little available on the subject, making this illustrated study, with its black and white photos, drawings, and extensive social and architectural history, an essential reference indeed.

Aztecs & Conquistadores
John Pohl & Charles M. Robinson III
Osprey Publishing
2427 Bond St., University Park, IL 60466
1841769347 $24.95

Any student of early Spanish history or Aztec history must take a look at AZTECS & CONQUISTADORES: THE SPANISH INVASION & THE COLLAPSE OF THE AZTEC EMPIRE, which surveys the impact the Spanish conquests had on world history. The focus here is upon the military might of Cortes, the training and experience of men on both sides of the conflict, and the major battles that subdued the Aztecs. Color maps, illustrations and charts throughout enhance the survey and provide exact explanations and insights suitable for both high school and college level history students.

Pictorial Victorians
Julia Thomas
Ohio University Press
Scott Quadrangle, #226, Athens, OH 45701
0821415913 $44.95

It's difficult to easily categorize PICTORIAL VICTORIANS: THE INSCRIPTION OF VALUES IN WORD AND IMAGE. Its focus on illustration and narrative painting, two of the most popular Victorian-era genres, would seem to place PICTORIAL VICTORIANS in our art section but we're reviewing it here for its important historical and cultural insights. Julia Thomas is a lecturer at the Centre for Critical and Cultural Theory in Wales: her survey of the interplay between word and image and how it relates to Victorian ideals and ideas of self make for an important, college-level study which will hold broad appeal for both art libraries and any history collection strong on Victorian history.

Lost Worlds
Michael Bywater
c/o Trafalgar Square, distributor
Box 257, N. Pomfret, VT 05053
1862077983 $25.00

People, civilizations, and even works of art and cities vanish, leaving human culture to be defined as much by their absence as their presence. LOST WORLDS: WHAT HAVE WE LOST, AND WHERE DID IT GO charts these missing curiosities of the past, using extensive quotes from source materials in its catalog of loss. From lost ideas and languages to icons of civilization, LOST WORLDS takes a journey through history to examine the impact of the past. An inherently fascinating, informative, thoughtful, thought-provoking , and highly recommended read!

The History of Venezuela
H. Michael Tarver & Julia C. Frederick
Greenwood Press
Box 5007, Westport, CT 06881-5007
0-313335257 $45.00

Adding to Greenwood's 'Histories of the Modern Nations' series is the important HISTORY OF VENEZUELA, a survey of the nation from its foundations as a Spanish colony for 300 years to its succession of military dictatorships to modern times. Students at the high school and college levels as well will find HISTORY OF VENEZUELA an excellent overview that considers the entirety of the nation's history, economy, and political influences. Perfect as an introduction to the nation, and packed with facts useful for reports.

Aileen Keating
Prometheus Books
59 John Glenn Dr., Amherst, NY 14228-2197
1591023467 $28.00

Any studying Middle East history or culture, particularly those at the college level, will find the weighty 560-page MIRAGE: POWER, POLITICS, AND THE HIDDEN HISTORY OF ARABIAN OIL to be a methodical and important survey of the discovery, development and use of Middle Eastern oil. From the history of discoveries and the reasons reserves in some countries went untapped for decades to the role of one New Zealander Frank Holmes in discovering and revealing these new sources, MIRAGE delves into the background and uses the author's original research from archives around the world in its in-depth revelation – which even includes maps, photos, and a 'who's who' of key people. An in-depth, essential pick for any collection solid in Middle Eastern studies and issues.

John Reader
Atlantic Monthly Press
841 Broadway, New York NY 10003
0871138980 $26.00

With a subject as broad in scope and as potentially weighty as 'cities', one would think a book of the same name would cover over 500 pages and be detrimental to leisure browsing: not so: CITIES is a lively and vigorous revelation of how cities evolved, what made them thrive or decline, and how they transformed themselves to cultural centers over the centuries. Contrary to popular belief, cities actually fostered the growth of farming and hold a symbiotic and close relationship with the countryside and trade routes: Reader provides a map of changes and the social, political and economic connections between cities and country around the world. The lively format makes for an exceptional coverage which lends particularly well to leisure reading.

The Political Science Shelf

America's Constitution
Akhil Reed Amar
Random House
1745 Broadway, 17th floor, New York, NY 10019
1400062624 $29.95 1-800-726-0600

Akhil Reed Amar is a constitutional-law scholar and here provides a history and review of America's founding document, explaining not just what it says and how it came about – but why. From the influence of existing American legal texts of the time which helped create the 'master plan' of Constitutional content to issues of what parts should be unamendable and challenges to its laws, AMERICA'S CONSTITUTION: A BIOGRAPHY charts the emerging personality and structure of the Constitution's very premises. A 'must' for any college-level collection serious about political science and American history.

The American History Shelf

The Missing Corpse
Wayne Fanebust
99 Post Road West, Westport, CT 06881
0275987620 $44.95

Alexander Stewart was 'The Merchant Prince of Manhattan' in early New York whose name was famous for another reason after his death: the robbing of his grave set off one of the biggest investigations in the city's history and was recounted by Mark Twain and others. THE MISSING CORPSE: GRAVE ROBBING A GILDED AGE TYCOON details the circumstances of the grave robbing, the many theories which abounded at the time, likely events, and its social impact. An excellent blend of true crime, early New York history and culture, and science makes THE MISSING CORPSE a detailed, involving study.

New Art City
Jed Perl
Alfred A. Knopf
c/o Random House
1745 Broadway, 17th floor, New York, NY 10019
1400041317 $35.00 1-800-726-0600

Plenty of art books have been written about New York; but NEW ART CITY: MANHATTAN AT MID-CENTURY is a cut above them all, offering a fine panoramic view of 20th century New York art and culture by an influential art critic of our times. From the artist's studio to coffeehouses, bohemian neighborhoods around the city, and changing attitudes on traditional versus modern art, the pulse and soul of the Manhattan art community is captured in an exciting expose of the undercurrents of its influences.

American Christmases
Joanne Martell
John F. Blair
1406 Plaza Dr., Winston-Salem, NC 27103
0895873192 $24.95

Changing festivals and traditions of Christmas are celebrated in a warm survey of Christmas customs in AMERICAN CHRISTMASES: FIRSTHAND ACCOUNTS OF HOLIDAY HAPPENINGS FROM EARLY DAYS TO MODERN TIMES. Here are letters, memoirs, notes and reflections on the season, with a range of contributions moving from immigrant memories and experiences to passages from famous Americans from Daniel Boone who describes his Christmas spent as an Indian captive to a woman's Christmas with the Confederate Army during the Civil War. A lovely, diverse collection.

The Architecture Shelf

Architecture of Spain
Alejandro Lapunzina
Greenwood Press
Box 5007, Westport, CT 06881-5007
0313319634 $75.00

Joining others in the 'Reference Guides to National Architecture' series is an important survey of Spanish architectural heritage, ARCHITECTURE OF SPAIN. It covers all regions of Spain, examines almost seventy of the country's key landmarks, and includes history as well as appraisal of style, architectures, renovation efforts, and cultural insights. Recommended for either students of art, Spanish history, or would-be travelers to Spain holding a special interest in architectural heritage.

50 Great Adventures
Jonathan Lee
900 Broadway #603, New York NY 10003
3791334344 $29.95

Fifty buildings from around the world are explored through their creators, offering a blend of buildings and biographical sketches which lend to an appreciation of why architecture is created. 50 GREAT ADVENTURES: EXTRAORDINARY PLACES AND THE PEOPLE WHO BUILT THEM packs in over two hundred color illustrations and provides both a history of the creation's place in architecture and a survey of how it has affected its community. A welcome and recommended addition to professional and academic library Architectural Studies collections, this as an architectural guide, a travel guide, or a survey of architectural inspirations: it fits all categories.

Princeton Architectural Press
37 E 7th St., New York NY 10003

Innovative textiles offer some of the most intriguing design options today, but few design or textile coverages discuss extreme textiles in depth. Matilda McQuaid 's EXTREME TEXTILES: DESIGNING FOR HIGH PERFORMANCE (156898507X $45.00) surveys engineered fabrics and their radical uses, from cardiac constraint socks to airbags and transportation textiles. Even buildings use these extreme textiles in construction, and EXTREME TEXTILES surveys all these uses in a blend of startling full-page illustrations and discussions of fiber properties, performance standards, and unique uses. Whether it's architecture or art, students at the college level will find EXTREME TEXTILES both accessible and detailed. Amy Weinstein's ONCE UPON A TIME: ILLUSTRATIONS FROM FAIRYTALES, FABLES, PRIMERS, POP-UPS AND OTHER CHILDREN'S BOOKS (1568985649, $35.00) is based upon an art exhibition of the same name and uses colorful images from Victorian-era illustrated books by Ellen Liman and her husband Arthur to provide a review of striking art objects and the rise of children's literature. Exquisite full-page color plates - some on double-page spreads – liberally accent descriptions which include story plot summaries and commentary. A treasure for any who love old-fashioned children's books. Donald Albrecht's THE MYTHIC CITY (1568985622, $40.00) provides Samuel Gottscho's photos taken from 1925-40, packing in pages of black and white shots of interiors and exteriors alike, from famous structures to those lesser-known but with classic architectural styles. Accompany an exhibition THE MYTHIC CITY, these bold 1930s images capture a bygone era in nearly 200 images from the Battery to Harlem. Martin Venezky's IT IS BEAUTIFUL THEN GONE (1568984561, $40.00) provides an unusual artistic approach: Venezky hones 'Slow Design', using raw materials and old design tools of collage and cut-and-paste to create an artwork which will intentionally age and decay over time. By this process, Martin Venezky maintains, the art evolves and changes and the artist develops a closer connection with the tool over the machine. IT IS BEAUTIFUL…THEN GONE provides his commercial design work plus new graphics created just for this book: some 700 images in all.

The Art Shelf

Mark Francis, Editor; Hal Foster, Survey
Phaidon Press
180 Varick St., 14th Floor, New York NY 10014
0714843636 $75.00

Mark Francis is a London curator and writer, Hal Foster a Townsend Martin Professor of Art and Archaeology at Princeton: the two combine forces in POP. Pop described art, film, photography and architectural design from the 1950s through the 50s, which used mass media and mass production as inspiration. Other histories have presented Pop art as an isolated form: POP surveys all its various forms around the world, providing a rich key to the art and influences of artists from Warhol to Sigmar Polke. Full-page black and white and color examples appear throughout, but it's the rich, in-depth art and cultural survey which sets POP aside from any other.

The Education of A Graphic Designer, 2nd Edition
Steven Heller
Allworth Press
10 E. 23rd St., New York NY 10010
1581154313 $24.95

Why purchase this newly published second edition of THE EDUCATION OF A GRAPHIC DESIGNER when you already own the a first edition? Because it's more than an just a minor update: forty new essays discussing a range of the latest graphic design topics, from web construction and digital media, have been added to this second edition, where top designers and educators speak of both theory and applications. College-level undergrad and grad students will find EDUCATION OF A GRAPHIC DESIGNER an essential survey of major practices and ideas within the graphic design industry: a survey that is simply not to be missed by any dedicated and professional graphic designer.

Snow Painting
Rosemary Reed
Publishers Design Group
Box 37, Roseville, CA 95678
1929170157 $32.95

SNOW PAINTING: CHINESE BRUSH PAINTING is a gorgeous presentation providing artists with all the fundamentals needed to produce Chinese-style brush paintings. From a survey of inks, stones, and brushes to a treatise on basic color, paper, observing and understanding how snow is depicted in art, and a step-by-step approach to subject definition, materials, and effects, SNOW PAINTING is packed with detail ranging from bird observation to stylistic guidelines. Simply lovely and well detailed.

The Blaue Reiter Almanac
Wassily Kandinsky and Franz Marc, Editors
MFA Publications
465 Huntington Ave., Boston, MA 02115-5597
0878467009 $22.50

The Blaue Reiter art movement began in 1911, founded by the same two young painters who here edit THE BLAUE REITER ALMANAC: it blended international culture with European avant-garde and THE BLAUE REITER ALMANAC provides essays long unavailable in English. This documentary edition is edited by Klaus Lankheit and blends art history and a survey of moments with black and white illustrations and Blaue Reiter philosophy. A 'must' for any who would understand the premises and foundation history of the Blaue Reiter movement.

New Directions in Jewellery
Jivan Astflack, Caroline Broadhead & Paul Derrez
Black Dog Publishing
Unit 4.04 Tea Building, 56 Shoreditch High St., London E1 6JJ UK
1904772196 $39.95

Over 80 jewelry makers who are creating radical new designs, blending textiles with sculpture, are changing the way jewelry is made and presented, and NEW DIRECTIONS IN JEWELLERY discusses these changes in essays which profile artists and their approaches. Distinguishing design paths, examples of various designs which defy the usual geometric and material choices, and commentary on artist and fashion statements make NEW DIRECTIONS IN JEWELLERY an excellent survey of the latest trends in style and jewelry creation. Informed and informative, NEW DIRECTIONS IN JEWELLERY is a 'must' for any college-level or professional reference collection strong in modern art and jewelry.

Fantastic Realms
V. Shane
c/o F&W Publications
4700 E. Galbraith Rd., Cincinnati, OH 452326
1581806825 $19.99

If you like to draw and enjoy fantasy, then V. Shane's FANTASTIC REALMS: DRAW FANTASY CHARACTERS, CREATURES AND SETTINGS is for you. Packed with both step-by-step inlay illustrations of close-ups for drawing hands, inking approaches, and capturing action and color drawings of full finished products, FANTASTIC REALMS offers everything from coloring keys and notes on texturing and shading to using variety and bar sweeps to give an atmosphere to movement.

North Light Books
c/o F&W Publications
4700 E. Galbraith Rd., Cincinnati, OH 45236

Judi Watanabe, Alison Eads and Laurie Dewberry's RETRO MANIA! (1581807465, $17.99) is a craft title to delight the eye: over sixty cards, party decorations, and scrapbook layouts demonstrate the retro style from the 1940s through the 70s, suggesting flashy ideas for themes and offering 'recipes' for success which include explicit directions on card stock and types, gift boxes and cans to make, and more. An excellent display of fun projects tied with ideas for entertainment and gift-giving. Jean Grastorf's POURING LIGHT: LAYERING TRANSPARENT WATERCOLOR (1581806051, $28.99) advocates pouring watercolor to achieve radiant results. It's a technique which involves balancing the free flow of watercolor on wet paper, which sounds complicated and iffy – but not under artist instructor Jean Grastorf's hand. From the unique requirements involved in pouring colors to understanding the role of light in the watercolor medium, POURING LIGHT is filled with tips, pages packed with color examples, and wonderful artist insights.

Contemporary Clay
Joe Earle
MFA Publications
465 Huntington Ave., Boston, MA 02115-5597
0878466967 $24.95

Over fifty works by modern clay artists are profiled in CONTEMPORARY CLAY: JAPANESE CERAMICS FOR THE NEW CENTURY, a catalog which follows the most innovative of Japanese ceramists. Puts range from porcelains with Chinese inspirations from the past to contemporary modern designs and provide a survey of different uses of modern forms, along with artist reactions to the new clay works. Each artist receives a full page photo and a facing page describing training and the evolution of repertoire and direction, making CONTEMPORARY CLAY an outstanding presentation recommended for art library collections.

World on Sunday
Nicholson Baker & Margaret Brentano
Bullfinch Press
c/o Little, Brown & Company
1271 Avenue of the Americas, New York, NY 10020
0821261932 $50.00 1-800-759-0190

Joseph Pulitzer's New York WORLD flourished at the turn of the 20th century and grew from a modern daily paper to a sensationalist publication packed with striking colorful art, from photos to cartoons and drawings. THE WORLD ON SUNDAY gathers over a hundred of the best from WORLD and places them in an oversized presentation to display their color on single and double-page spreads. A chronological arrangement lends to a fine sequence of reproductions tracing editorial and news highlights of the times, while colorful commentary accompanies the pieces and provides the necessary background for appreciation by all audiences. THE WORLD ON SUNDAY: GRAPHIC ART IN JOSEPH PULITZER'S NEWSPAPER (1898-1911) is a top pick not just for art or newspaper library holdings, but for general-interest collections as well: it captures the art, craft and style of a bygone era and is a lush example of newspaper history at its finest.

The Theatre/Cinema/TV Shelf

No Applause-Just Throw Money
Trav S.D.
Faber & Faber
c/o Farrar Straus Giroux
19 Union Square West, New York NY 10003
0571211925 $25.00 1-888-330-8477

From 1881 to 1932 vaudeville was the center of American show business, and modern-day vaudevillian Trav S.D. details its history and impact from early to modern times in a survey which traces the big names of vaudeville and the attraction and representation of its shows. Vaudeville was the first major American equal opportunity employer, and it allowed even immigrants easy access to American culture: chapters trace major players, acts, and influences.

King Kong
Ray Morton
Applause Books
19 W. 21st St., New York NY 10010
1557836698 $19.95

Fans of the legendary 1933 monster will relish the first book to detail the making of all seven feature films about Kong in KING KONG; THE HISTORY OF A MOVIE ICON. From how the character was first created and developed to the sequence of films which starred Kong and produced a host of variants and spoofs, including reviews of the Kongs that never made it to screen, KING KONG packs in vintage duotone and color photos from movies, ads and scene shots to accompany a survey of everything from the masks and making of the films to their marketing.

The Graphic Novel Shelf

Fantagraphic Books
7563 Lake City Way NE, Seattle, WA 98115

Two excellent graphic accounts are top picks and recommended for any library collection strong in graphic novels or graphic illustration. Barry Windsor-Smith's THE FREEBOOTERS (1560976624, $29.95) details – in full color throughout – the exploits of one Axus the Great, a hero past his prime who can't just enjoy a lazy retirement, but must fight to save a city and possibly the world from a monster. 'The Freebooters' was one of three comics series which appeared in author Windsor-Smith's own 1990s magazine STORYTELLER; its resurrection here adds over 80 new pages of story and art and makes it a powerful companion to his YOUNG GODS & FRIENDS, as well as a strong stand-alone story. Fans of Dennis the Menace, a strip still running in many syndicated papers, will appreciate the autobiography of Hank Ketcham in THE MERCHANT OF DENNIS (1560976802, $24.95), a black and white cartoon-filled account of Ketcham's journey from a college dropout Depression child to a famous illustrator whose dream of drawing for Walt Disney led him to his own career as a successful cartoonist. THE MERCHANT OF DENNIS traces Ketcham's life and also offers plenty of insights into the evolution of Dennis the Menace, making this a keeper for any Dennis fan.

The Photography Shelf

Picture Taker
Ken Elkins
University of Alabama Press
Box 870380, Tuscaloosa, AL 35487-0380
0817314784 $35.00

Photojournalists abound, but Ken Elkins stands out from the crowd: he retired in 2000 and is still taking pictures, as chief photographer for the Anniston Star. PICTURE TAKER gathers photos celebrating his 42-year career, presenting a hundred black and white photos from his many images. Many of the rural scenes he's captured are gone, so PICTURE TAKER celebrates more than Elkins: it captures a bygone world and provides many portraits of rural folk and regions which have changed. Elkins focused on his native Alabama, capturing mostly the poor: PICTURE TAKER: PHOTOGRAPHS BY KEN ELKINS pays tribute to these people as much as to Elkins' talents.

Wood, Wind and Water
Anne T. Converse & Carolyn M. Ford
Anne Converse Photography
Box 209, Marion, MA 02738
0971403007 $55.00

One of the most beautiful photography books covering sailing and boating remains a unique classic deserving of ongoing mention and recommendation even several years after its publication. The Opera House Cup Race is one of the best classic yacht regattas, and Anne T. Converse's lovely photos capture the highlights in WOOD, WIND AND WATER: A STORY OF THE OPERA HOUSE CUP RACE OF NANTUCKET. Full-page color photos in an oversized presentation provide the dramatic action of the race in full swing, while Carolyn M. Ford synthesizes the peak moments of several years into a single tribute. An outstanding presentation deserves ongoing recommendation for both art and nautical collections.

Watson Guptill Publications
770 Broadway, New York NY 10003

Two lovely photographic collections are recommended picks for any collection gathering photos of nudes. Pascal Baetens' HEAVENLY BEAUTIES (0917439838, $40.00) presents the Belgian photographer's nudes: though Baeten also produces in portrait and fashion photography, the narrowed focus on his black and white nudes provides a focus on techniques and subtleties of both indoor and outdoor nude portraits. Petter Hegre's 100 NAKED GIRLS (0817452974, $40.00) provides his sixth book of photos and continues to develop the photographer's 'new nudes' style: real people captured in color in authentic situations. In avoiding the usual Hollywood image in favor of authenticity, these nudes stand out for strikingly different approaches and poses. Very highly recommended: an exceptional production and a 'must' for any serious college-level photography or art school collection.

Walking the Bible: A Photographic Journey
Bruce Feiler
William Morrow
10 E. 53rd St., New York NY 10022
0060799048 $32.50

WALKING THE BIBLE: A PHOTOGRAPHIC JOURNEY could also have been featured in our Spirituality section: it's reviewed here for its striking photo impact so that artists don't miss the value of its presentation. It's a companion volume to the new PBS series on its way: in 2004 Feiler reprised the 10,000 mile walk through the Middle East deserts which led to his WALKING THE BIBLE. This photographic odyssey blends stunning photos – many taken by Feiler – with a survey of Biblical places and landscapes. A striking visual panorama, not to be missed.

1151 Marina Village Parkway, Alameda, CA 94501

Two excellent Photoshop guides are reviewed here rather than in our 'Computer' section for their exceptionally strong links between photography and computer manipulation. Start with Ellen Anon and Tim Grey's PHOTOSHOP FOR NATURE PHOTOGRAPHERS (0782144276, $49.99): it provides a workbook approach for photographers which tell how to optimize an image in camera, then how to use Photoshop to tweak and refine that image. The narrowed emphasis on nature photographer allows for customization of light, patterns, special effects and explores which are usual nature photo challenges. Tim Grey's PHOTOSHOP CS2 WORKFLOW: THE DIGITAL PHOTOGRAPHER'S GUIDE (0782143962, $39.99) helps photographers establish a workflow complimentary to using Photoshop in efforts. For many the process of image manipulation on the computer overshadows the actual photographic capture itself: PHOTOSHOP CS2 WORKFLOW tells how to prioritize image optimization processes, how to organize and sort digital images, and how to use Photoshop's advanced features quickly and efficiently. Both are highly recommended photography tools any Photoshop owner should have at hand.

Amherst Media
Box 586, Buffalo, NY 14226

Professionals needing tips to enhance photographic efforts as well as those entering the world of professional production will find these excellent new Amherst Media titles provide important tips from real-life situations. Kevin Kubota's DIGITAL PHOTOGRAPHY BOOT CAMP: A STEP-BY-STEP GUIDE FOR PROFESSIONALS (1584281693, $34.95) comes packed with instructions on everything from working with digital images and maximizing camera settings based on a camera's unique attributes to retouching, image enhancements, and presenting images to maximum professional advantage for sales. Packed with not only color photo examples but color screen shots, DIGITAL PHOTOGRAPHY BOOT CAMP covers all the basics – and streamlines them. Bill Hurter's BEST OF PHOTOGRAPHIC LIGHTING (1584281685, $34.95) covers all the basics of light and how it affects photography. From selecting artificial lights and modifiers to working with natural light and window light, both indoor and outdoor lights and setups for adding color and dimension are covered, with examples in full color from a wide range of photographers. Diagrams of light projection blend with color image examples – some full-page – and many specific tips. Supplement this with Bill Hurter's GROUP PORTRAIT PHOTOGRAPHY HANDBOOK (1584281596, $34.95), which narrows the focus to the special demands a group portrait requires. Images from over forty top portrait photographers also enhance this presentation of techniques that digital and film photographers alike can use. From using levels to pose large groups to coordinating apparel and posing special groups, there are plenty of insights. Speaking of posing, two guides cover this topic exclusively. Norman Phillips' PROFESSIONAL POSING TECHNIQUES FOR WEDDING AND PORTRAIT PHOTOGRAPHERS (1584281707, $34.95) shows how to pose men, women and children alike, focusing on the shared goals of a good pose and discussing what sets a good pose apart from a bad one. From standing, seated and floor poses to resolving common posing problems, it's packed with plenty of color photo examples. Bill Hurter's PORTRAIT PHOTOGRAPHER'S GUIDE TO POSING (158428126X, $29.95) talks about 'cutting edge' posing, reviewing the basics and then going on to tell how to choose a pose which will best flatter the client. Well over a hundred color images demonstrate these 'beyond the ordinary' pose choices in action, featuring techniques for all types of portraiture and including details n corrective posing. All are very basic references any professional photographer or aspiring pro needs to have. Pose them then sell 'em with the aid of Jeff and Kathleen Hawkins' PROFESSIONAL MARKETING & SELLING TECHNIQUES FOR DIGITAL WEDDING PHOTOGRAPHERS (1584281804, $34.95), which appears in its second updated edition to cover all the basics of selling wedding photos, from identifying a target market and a specific demographic within that market to using bridal shows, networking, and internet marketing techniques to best advantage. Wedding photographers can not only gain but can increase sales and even pros will find many income-producing tips here. Photoshop owners will find very useful Maurice Hamilton's BLACK AND WHITE PHOTOGRAPHY TECHNIQUES WITH ADOBE PHOTOSHOP (1584281731, $34.95), a fine guide to producing black and white photos through digital manipulation. From taking black and white shots and editing them for professional results to optimizing the conversion to black and white and using Photoshop's special features to aid in the finishing process, black and white photographers now have a guide to how those polished results are produced. Bill Hurter's THE BEST OF FAMILY PORTRAIT PHOTOGRAPHY: PROFESSIONAL TECHNIQUES AND IMAGES (1584281685, $34.95) shows how to pose and shoot to produce a to-notch family portrait, whether using indoor or outdoor settings. From understanding the basics of equipment selection to posing techniques so everyone looks good, group arrangements for appealing compositions, and working with children, chapters cover everything from subject dress and things to avoid to the importance of the 'rule of third' in image composition. If you're regularly shooting at night or under low-light conditions you must have Peter Cope's NIGHT AND LOW-LIGHT TECHNIQUES FOR DIGITAL PHOTOGRAPHY (158428174X, $34.95) close at hand: it discusses how color is changed by low light, how sunsets and sunrises photography differently, and how to capture lightning, moons, cityscapes, fireworks and more. Both camera and software techniques are covered in an excellent primer with plenty of color photo examples. Lou Jacobs Jr.'s HOW TO START AND OPERATE A DIGITAL PORTRAIT PHOTOGRAPHY STUDIO (1584281715, $39.95) covers everything the photographer needs to put together a profitable studio, from purchasing studio equipment and determining the best strategy for proofing and presenting images to establishing food marketing plans. With fundamentals of business savvy blending into the specifics of operating a photography studio, complete with color photos and notes on successful images, this is a real winner. Jeff Smith's CORRECTIVE LIGHTING, POSING & RETOUCHING FOR DIGITAL PORTRAIT PHOTOGAPHERS, 2ND EDITION (158428157X, $34.95) provides photographers with a step-by-step guide for adjusting photos, from posing in studio or on location to conducting digital repairs. Common problems include weight, glasses glare, large noses and thinning hair: there can also be blemishes, stray hairs and even braces – all of which can be remedied both in studio and using digital adjustments. Jack and Sue Drafahl's MASTER GUIDE FOR UNDERWATER DIGITAL PHOTOGRAPHY (1584281669, $34.95) provides all the basics to master underwater photography; from buying an underwater digital camera and preparing for the first dive to handling common image problems in underwater shots. Color examples throughout discuss settings, options, and alternatives and teach all the basics of underwater photography. Bill Hurter's BEST OF WEDDING PHOTOGRAPHY: TECHNIQUES AND IMAGES FROM THE PROS, 2ND EDITION (1584281545, $34.95) provides a wealth of techniques and images culled from over thirty professional photographers and pairs these images with very specific tips for both digital and film photographers. Some of the best images on the market receive in-depth analysis and technical coverage on what elements make them great.

Eva: Elonge de ma Fille
Irina Ionesco
Alice Press
097270731X $85.00

In 1935 Irina Inoesco was born to Romanian parents: separated from them at the age of four, she wound up in Paris as a dancer and painter before she became a photographer of the strange, beautiful and erotic. Thirty years later, in Paris, she began photographing her young daughter Eva, documenting her maturity through the years in both clothed and nude portraits which weave sensuality, innocence, and art. EVA is the result of these years of documentation, culling over a hundred of what may be thousands of images of Eva produced since the 1970s for a catalog like no other. EVA has been condemned and even banned for its sometimes blatantly erotic portraits of a child – but eventually has been accepted in art circles as a stunning collection of unique black and white shots. They may shock and amaze, but rarely will they bring casual acceptance – they are unique images and any college-level art library should be proud – and daring enough – to include EVA in its exhibition of outstanding photographic compilations: it's that rare and good.

The Science Shelf

Andrew Smith
Fourth Estate
c/o HarperCollins
10 E. 53rd St., New York N 10022-5299
0007155417 $24.95

Twelve astronauts participated in the Apollo Moon landings: today nine are still living, and are revealed here in MOONDUST, a probe of NASA dreams, achievements, and expectations. The examinations of the astronauts and their world considers how the Apollo program's demise reflected an end to the optimistic atmosphere of the space program in general, and its effect on the original Moonwalkers. An engrossing blend of biography, history and science reflects the achievements of a program and its effects on those who made it their lives when the world moved on.

Theory & Practice Of Goldsmithing
Prof. Dr. Erhard Brepohl; Tim McCreight, Editor
Brynmorgan Press
34 Danforth St., Portland, ME 04101
0961598492 $70.00

THEORY AND PRACTICE OF GOLDSMITHING first saw print in East Germany in 1961, becoming a major resource of jewelers, sculptors and others working in metals: this is the first English language edition, and any metalworker will quickly find it indispensable. From silversmithing to chainmaking and setting stones, techniques, melt diagrams, specifications, and heated metal effects are surveyed in very technical chapters appropriate for practicing goldsmiths and advanced students. You won't find these advanced discussions easily elsewhere, so any college-level library or studio reference collection needs to add THEORY AND PRACTICE OF GOLDSMITHING to their list of foundation references.

Mechatronics for the Evil Genius
Newton C. Braga
2 Penn Plaza, New York NY 10121-2298
0071457593 $24.95

If it's electronics and mechanics which intrigue you, combined with a bit of robotics and do-it-yourself projects, MECHATRONICS FOR THE EVIL GENIUS: 25 BUILD-IT-YOURSELF PROJECTS is for you. Here are step-by-step instructions, schematics, materials and parts lists, and clear diagramed outlines of how to build, mechanical parts, testing, and exploring project potentials. From generators and cannons to coin tossers, mechanics will be delighted with the intriguing array of mechanical and electronic devices – and with clear explanations of the science behind them.

Coincidences, Chaos And All That Math Jazz
Edward Burger & Michael Starbird
W.W. Norton
500 – 5th Ave., New York NY 10110
0393059456 $24.95

Math professor Edward Burger and teaching professor Michael Starbird blend forces in a guide lay readers will find readily accessible, COINCIDENCES, CHAOS, AND ALL THAT MATH JAZZ: MAKING LIGHT OF WEIGHTY IDEAS. Nearly two hundred illustrations and diagrams supplement scientific 'trivia' questions about everything from an infinite motel's occupants to a sexy rectangle's origins. Yes, there's math here – but also hard science and an imaginative lively dialogue which draws even reluctant math readers to learn. Add a healthy dose of humor and you have a very accessible inquiry.

God Created the Integers
Stephen Hawking, Editor
Running Press
125 South Twenty-Second Street, Philadelphia, PA 19103-4399
0762419229 $29.95 1-800-345-5359

Math enables human society to function – but that areas of math make modern wonders possible, and what problem made each theory's first inventor become involved in a puzzle? While GOD CREATED THE INTEGERS: THE MATHEMATICAL BREAKTHROUGHS THAT CHANGED HISTORY is a follow-up to ON THE SHOULDERS OF GIANTS, it stands well alone as a history of thirty-one landmark cases of mathematical problem-solving, from geometry to calculus. Also included are biographies of each mathematician, the full proof of work reproduced from the original publication, and newly translated results; three of which appear in English for the first time. Recommended as a pick for college-level collections strong in mathematics.

Mary Roach
W.W. Norton
500 – 5th Ave., New York NY 10110-0017
0393059626 $24.95

There's something different apparent in SPOOK: SCIENCE TACKLES THE AFTERLIFE: it smacks of solid investigative research rather than sensationalism, and traces the author's journey to understand what happens upon death. Will personality remain? Is there another world beyond ours? Author Roach searched out scientists, engineers and mediums alike who are all trying to prove or disprove that life goes on after death. She journeyed from rural India to the US, enrolled in an English medium school, and interviewed university professors conducting research. SPOOK follows her journey, which includes a healthy dose of history into the scientific investigation of an afterlife.

Firefly Books
c/o 155 E. 34th St., #5B, New York NY 10016

It's been nearly 400 years since Galileo used a telescope to change the nature of astronomy, and in that period of time the telescope has been totally transformed. If it's an in-depth history of telescopes and observatories which is needed to fill a college-level or even a public library holding, it should be the weighty and visually stunning GREAT OBSERVATORIES OF THE WORLD (1554070554 $59.95), which tells the history and development of nearly 40 of the world's preeminent observatories, 10 space-based observatories, and 11 notable telescopes and arrays. From technological advancements in lens development to new astronomy and physics theories which contributed to building different kinds of telescopes, GREAT OBSERVATORIES OF THE WORLD is a outstanding survey of both current and future observatories and their many influences. Very highly recommended: a unique, top pick in the area of astronomy and scientific observation. Also a top recommendation is Frances Backhouse's WOODPECKERS OF NORTH AMERICA (1554070465, $39.95): college-level collections strong in science and nature as well as general-interest public libraries will want a copy. Chapters provide a comprehensive overview of the anatomy, behavior and ecology of woodpeckers throughout North America, considering common puzzles about their patterns and relationships, describing different behaviors and habitats, and packing in the color photos. Very highly recommended.

Hydrogen: Hot Stuff Cool Science
Rex A. Ewing
PixyJack Press
Box 149, Masonville, CO 80541
0965809862 $24.95

Review basic chemical principles involved in how fuel transforms into energy, explore hydrogen sources and potentials, and learn about possible future applications in a blend of science and technological insight, HYDROGEN: HOT STUFF COOL SCIENCE. Other books focus on either science alone or principles of alternative energy: few draw the two together so neatly or easily, allowing the subject to be explored by both students and lay readers. Chapters utilize a lively first-person dialogue approach to make learning easy, using examples and characters to keep the science and applications simple to understand despite the complexity of the topic. An excellent guide for any who would understand the science behind hydrogen.

The Equation That Couldn't Be Solved
Mario Livio
Simon & Schuster
1230 Avenue of Americas, New York NY 10020
0743258207 $26.95

Symmetry is the topic of Mario Livio's THE EQUATION THAT COULDN'T BE SOLVED: HOW MATHEMATICAL GENIUS DISCOVERED THE LANGUAGE OF SYMMETRY, and will make an involving read for those involved in either science or art. Mathematicians solved algebraic equations until they came to a stop with the quintic equation, which resisted solution until two mathematical geniuses independently discovered it couldn't be solved using the usual methods. This account of 'group theory' explains both the concept of symmetry and the evolution of its foundations, and makes for a lively read for a wide audience from physicists and science majors to students involved in the arts.

What Scientists Think
Jeremy Stangroom, Editor
270 Madison Ave., New York NY 10016
0415334276 $17.95

Many books contain insights by scientists – but few offer the focus of WHAT SCIENTISTS THINK, which is to interview scientists about their thoughts. Personal conversations with twelve of the biggest names in international science today tells what they're working on, what worries and angers them, and the social and religious implications of their studies. From the impact of a cure for cancer to the threat from bioterrorism, WHAT SCIENTISTS THINK provides much food for thought.

Giant Trees of Western America and the World
Al Carder
Harbour publishing
Box 219, Madeira Park, BC V0N 2HO, Canada
1550173634 $26.95

Al Carder spent sixty years as a plant biologist but never forgot the ancient Douglas fir forests which enthralled him as a child: when he retired he set out to find the trees, only to discover many had been felled by loggers or storms. GIANT TREES OF WESTERN AMERICA AND THE WORLD is his attempt to document those which remain and provides a catalog of the West's big trees of all species, from BC's 400-plus foot Lynn Valley fir to the massive redwoods of California. Some are thousands of years old and over 300 feet high: the author's scale drawings accompany discussions of observation history and plant biology. A 'must' for any who would discover the history and nature of the West's last stands of big trees.

Return to Wild America
Scott Weidensaul
Farrar, Straus, Giroux
19 Union Square West, New York NY 10003
0865476888 $26.00

In 1953 birder Roger Tory Peterson and British naturalist James Fisher journeyed for a hundred days covering some thirty thousand miles around North America, noting their discoveries in WILD AMERICA: here on the 50th anniversary of their trip naturalist Scott Weidensaul retraces their steps and tells of his findings in RETURN TO WILD AMERICA: A YEARLONG SEARCH FOR THE CONTINENT'S NATURAL SOUL. Many changes have taken place in the areas covered in WILD AMERICA: this documents both sad changes and hopeful changes from Newfoundland through the Northeast, where wildlife is returning to urban environments; from Florida where the Everglades continues to erode to Mexico, where rich ecosystems are being saved. It's refreshing to read about successes as well as struggles – and RETURN TO WILD AMERICA, for maximum impact, should be followed or preceded by a re-reading of WILD AMERICA for maximum effect.

Wild Belfast
Robert Scott
Blackstaff Press
c/o Dufour Editions
Box 7, Chester Springs, PA 19425-0007
0856407623 $29.95

WILD BELFAST: ON SAFARI IN THE CITY is an amazing book: a city guide which covers all the wildlife of the city, from insects to birds and mammals. From inner city parks and gardens to adjacent area meadows, wetlands and woods, WILD BELFAST offers a simply astounding, rich survey of all the creatures which live in the region – and how best to see them. Packed with color photos and natural history, this is one of the most amazing books available – we can only hope other urban areas will receive such insights. Very highly recommended indeed; even if you never visit Belfast and know little of the area, but are passionate about wildlife and natural history.

Florida's Birds, 2nd Edition
David S. Maehr & Herbert W. Kale II
Pineapple Press
Box 3889, Sarasota, FL 34230
1561643351 $21.95

Florida-bound or resident bird-watchers won't want to be without the second edition of a classic state-specific field guide, FLORIDA'S BIRDS: A FIELD GUIDE AND REFERENCE. This is no reprint edition: each section of FLORIDA'S BIRDS has been updated and thirty new species added, along with range maps for species and color-coded guides to month of presence. Each bird is illustrated not once but three times, text discusses habitats and habits, and sections on bird study and feeding provide in-depth detail. A 'must' handbook for any with Florida roots.

Candace Savage
Greystone Books
2323 Quebec St. #201, Vancouver, BC, Canada, V5T 4S7
Publishers Group West, distributor
1700 Fourth Street, Berkeley, CA 94710
1553651065 $20.00

Crows are toolmakers, tool users, and have complex family lives as well as their own language. Sounds too human to believe? Then you have to read up on them in CROWS: ENCOUNTERS WITH THE WISE GUYS. CROWS celebrates crow abilities, surveying their behavior, natural history, and more. Observations by scientists around the world are based on more than a decade of research and blend stories about crows with scientific observation to make for a most digestible, intriguing survey.

Caw of the Wild
Barb Kirpluk
2021 Pine Lake Rd. #100, Lincoln NE 68512
0595362680 $15.95

It's unusual to find two specific bird books on the same species in the same publishing season, but CAW OF THE WILD: OBSERVATIONS FROM THE SECRET WORLD OF CROWS arrived nearly simultaneously to CROWS and provides an intriguing contrast in style and approach. Barb Kirpluk is a passionate observer of crows and here shares her findings while tracking three urban crow families through their daily routines. She's befriended them, gained their trust, and thus provides a more personal observational style on crow habits and social relationships, including a healthy dose of scientific literature but adding a personal touch which brings the crow family to life.

The Real Roadrunner
Martha Anne Maxon
University of Oklahoma Press
2800 Venture Dr., Norman, OK 73069
0806136766 $39.95

The roadrunner is an icon of the Southwest so you'd think there would be many studies out on the roadrunner already – but it's one of the least understood and rarely receives individual examination. Here to correct that deficit is THE REAL ROADRUNNER, a guide to the behavioral patterns of the bird. Martha Maxon is a retired zoologist and environmental consultant who grew up in southern Texas: her assembly of literature and science about the roadrunner come from years of personal observation and research and provide a scholarly yet accessible survey.

The Economics Shelf

The Euro
Madeleine O. Hosli
Lynne Rienner
1800 – 30th St., Boulder, CO 80301
1588263525 $16.95

Any seeking a short history of the European monetary system and how it's being integrated today must have Madeleine O. Hosli's THE EURO: A CONCISE INTRODUCTION TO EUROPEAN MONETARY INTEGRATION in their collection: it analyzes the history and origins of the Euro system, how it works, and key issues surrounding debates and implications of its enactment. From exchange rates to fiscal stability, it covers all related topics.

The Business Shelf

Wharton School Publishing
1 Lake St., Upper Saddle River, NJ 07458

Two powerful titles reveal how to profit in hard times. Vijay Mahajan and Kamini Banga's THE 86% SOLUTION: HOW TO SUCCEED IN THE BIGGEST MARKET OPPORTUNITY OF THE 21ST CENTURY (0131589070, $26.99) discusses emerging markets: the key to the future. Emerging nations have many risks and potentials: the solutions for these nations offer a balance between tradition and innovation and are based upon author experiences with these emerging markets. Any company or business manager seeking to understand these markets will find THE 86% SOLUTION a key to understanding the new global marketplace's underlying forces and influences. Tony Davila, Marc Epstein and Robert Shelton's MAKING INNOVATION WORK: HOW TO MANAGE IT, MEASURE IT, AND PROFIT FROM IT (0131497863, $29.99) draws upon the authors' experience as innovation consulting specialists to review the latest research and ideas on how to construct strategies and organizational structures to encourage and manage innovation. From taking innovation ideas and incorporating them into an existing business structure to devising a strategy for encouraging innovation and building networks within and outside the company, chapters provide specific details on how to get the job done.

Dearborn Trade
30 S. Wacker Drive, #2500, Chicago, IL 60606-7481

Grocery retailing is a most competitive world and may groceries fail – but Trader Joe's succeeds, despite the fact it never places items on sale, pays some of the highest wages in the industry, offers employees fine benefits, and avoids advertising. These methods would seem to fly in the face of common grocery strategies: so how do they do it? Supermarket industry journalist Len Lewis traces the success of Trader Joe's IN THE TRADER JOE'S ADVENTURE (1419500139 $24.95) from its beginnings 45 years ago to its current image as a grocery with unique products and bargains alike. A 'must' for any who would uncover the rationale and strategies of a different kind of grocer. Mitch Meyerson's SUCCESS SECRETS OF THE ONLINE MARKETING SUPERSTARS (1419505017, $22.95) offers a wealth of e-commerce strategies geared to those who would stand out in the cluttered websites of today. From driving traffic to your site to writing web copy which invites purchase – and setting up a purchasing system which is secure and easy to use – SUCCESS SECRETS OF THE ONLINE MARKETING SUPERSTARS covers the biggest mistakes and biggest successes online, teaching users how to rely on strategies already used successfully by online marketers. Very highly recommended.

Harvard Business School Press
60 Harvard Way, Boston, MA 02163

Making money is all about forecasting accurately and understanding business and market cycles; yet too few books advocate the idea without telling how to play the game. Joseph H. Ellis 's AHEAD OF THE CURVE: A COMMONSENSE GUIDE TO FORECASTING BUSINESS AND MARKET CYCLES (1591396913 $29.95) provides the nuts and bolts of how to overcome the basic major flaws in the way economic information is reported and understood. From the basic economic indicators and their pros and cons to economic reports and common forecasting techniques, AHEAD OF THE CURVE seeks a clearer, more accurate explanation of trends – and provides investors and business managers with the tools for achieving this. Dan S. Cohen's THE HEART OF CHANGE FIELD GUIDE: TOOLS AND TACTICS FOR LEADING CHANGE IN YOUR ORGANIZATION (1591397758, $24.95) is a follow-up to the 1996 John Kotter best-sellers LEADING CHANGE, which outlined an eight-step program for organizational change which was applauded and followed by businesses around the world. Here leaders and managers receive tools and frameworks for bringing these changes to life within their own companies, teaching how to implement each step in the process and packing in checklists, commentary, tips, and practical application methods throughout. From communicating for buy-in to creating, shaping and imparting a vision for change, THE HEART OF CHANGE FIELD GUIDE takes idea and applies it to real-life situations.

235 Montgomery #650, San Francisco CA 94104-2916

Quite often the idea of profit and environmental health work against each other; but if 20 leading organizations as outlined in Pamela J. Gordon 's LEAN AND GREEN: PROFIT FOR YOUR WORKPLACE AND THE ENVIRONMENT (1576751708 $24.95) can succeed at both, any business can. LEAN AND GREEN shows how these companies succeeded by adopting solid environmental principles which worked economically as well. Over a hundred examples from major companies from Intel to Polaroid discuss various commitments, from recycling and environmental management systems to involving top management on down. Moshe Yudkowsky's THE PEBBLE AND THE AVALANCHE: HOW TAKING THINGS APART CREATES REVOLUTIONS (1576752941, $27.95) discusses the dynamic of 'disaggregation', in which changing industries rely on changing established structures and routines for modern advantage. From separating information from its storage medium (as in downloading data from the Web) to breaking up large company structures for better service and more clearly defined products, THE PEBBLE AND THE AVALANCHE examines how disaggregation works: the five methods used to take things part, and how this can generate new innovations and business options.

c/o Penguin Publishing Company
375 Hudson, New York NY 10014

Three outstanding new 'Complete Idiot' guides provide job seekers and entrepreneurs with important information. Brian O'Connell's DREAM JOBS (1592573827, $18.95) describes over a hundred occupations not to be found in the usual want ads, from home-based jobs to successful independent concept operators which brings in good money. The pros and cons of each business are surveyed, job duties and typical pay and perks are outlined, and facts and figures which support the job's future expectations revealed. Or, you can narrow it down right away to Susan Gilbert, W. Eric Martin and Linda Formichelli's STARTING & RUNNING A COFFEE BAR (1952574068, $16.95) which reveals all the details about what it takes to run a coffee bar. From legal issues and labor laws to tracking sales and developing a marketing strategy, STARTING & RUNNING A COFFEE BAR is packed with industry-specific tips. Any involved in business need to know how to put together a winning business letter or memo, and Tom Gorman's BUSINESS LETTERS AND MEMOS (1592574246, $21.95) appears in its second updated edition to include a CD ROM along with details on writing more effectively. From formats appropriate for electronic communications to the basics of grammar and producing a press release, BUSINESS LETTERS AND MEMOS is a guide any professional needs on his desk, close at hand.

Sell More Through Effective Technical Presentations: A Pocket Guide
Paul Gruhn
Box 12277, Research Triangle Park, NC 27709
1556178395 $25.00

The smallest of pockets or purses will readily accommodate this slim 2/5 x 5/5 title SELL MORE THROUGH EFFECTIVE TECHNICAL PRESENTATIONS, which will prove engineers, technical salespeople and marketers alike with instant support for a project or proposal. Tips and examples from the business world outline the basics of how to give an effective technical presentation and how to present it well, covering both pitfalls and successes.

Behind Closed Doors
Johanna Rothman & Esther Derby
0976694026 $24.95

The results of great management or poor management are all too evident – but usually the 'why' and 'how' of what makes a good or poor manager or system are more elusive. Hat's why BEHIND CLOSED DOORS: SECRETS OF GREAT MANAGEMENT is key to understanding: it uses the case history of one Sam, a manager brought on board in a company, as he learns to work with a new team and manage resources, using Sam's experience to illustrate important points of change and delegation. From creating individual goals to motivate team members to knowing how to hone opportunities to improve capacities, BEHIND CLOSED DOORS is a 'must' for any seeking to become a more effective manager.

1601 Broadway, New York NY 10019

Two excellent guides provide insights on careers and winning strategies for success. Bill Adler Jr.'s HOW TO NEGOTIATE LIKE A CHILD: UNLEASH THE LITTLE MONSTER WITHIN TO GET EVERYTHING YOU WANT (081447294X, $17.95) uses the premise that kids are the best negotiators in the world to show how the qualities of determination and stubbornness might translate well to a business environment. These negotiation tactics may be inspired by children, but they offer some real insights; from using tantrums as a 'secret weapon' (if Bill Gates can do it, so can others) to changing the rules and appearing needy. Sherie Gong Taguchi's THE CAREER TROUBLESHOOTER: TIPS AND TOOLS FOR OVERCOMING THE 21 MOST COMMON CHALLENGES TO SUCCESS (0814472294, $14.95) provides insights on typical problems faced by workers; from bad bosses and difficult colleagues to being fired or managing a major career change. With listings of top job and career websites, resume advice, details on how to make the best decisions in a career path, and more, THE CAREER TROUBLESHOOTER comes from an author with over 17 years of career development and recruiting experience. Gini Graham Scott's A SURVIVAL GUIDE FOR WORKING WITH BAD BOSSES: DEALING WITH BULLIES, IDIOTS, BACK-STABBERS, AND OTHER MANAGERS FROM HELL (0814472982, $15.00) provides practical advice to those saddled with a good job and a terrible manager. What to do? Chapters advise various tactics to dealing with different types of 'bad bosses', from handling a rigid attitude with a demonstration of a more profitable path to opening up possibilities for achievement through back door options and handling rivalry between co-workers. A range of scenarios and techniques will readily apply to real-life scenes workers most commonly experience.

How to Open a Financially Successful Bakery
Sharon L. Fullen & Douglas Brown
Atlantic Publishing Group
1210 SW 23rd Place, Ocala, FL 34474
0910627339 $39.95

Small bakeries can be started with a relatively low investment and can return big profits – and HOW TO OPEN A FINANCIALLY SUCCESSFUL BAKERY, with its companion CD-ROM of an editable business plan and financial statements in MS-Word format, is the way to make it happen. A blend of basic small business savvy and details particular to the bakery industry keeps this a narrowed, specific reference which stands out among the wealth of more general 'how to open a restaurant' guides, touching upon the specific needs and differences of the bakery industry. From pricing formulas and budgeting to menu plans and marketing tips, HOW TO OPEN A FINANCIALLY SUCCESSFUL BAKERY is a real winner.

Million Dollar Networking
Andrea R. Nierenberg
Capital Books
22841 Quicksilver Dr., Sterling, VA 20166
1933102055 $19.95

Author Andrea Nierenberg is president of Nierenberg Group Inc. which trains in customer service, sales, and networking: as such she's been heralded as a whiz at setting up businesses using networking strategies, and now you don't have to visit her to benefit: MILLION DOLLAR NETWORKING does it for you, providing her first book packed with networking tips and insider savvy. A set of rules common to any type of business on how to develop effective networking strategies accompanies chapters of steps for establishing these connections. From the etiquette of giving and taking information to creating strategic business alliances, MILLION DOLLAR NETWORKING: THE SURE WAY TO FIND, GROW AND KEEP YOUR BUSINESS is essential for any who would profit.

Marketing and Buying Fine Art Online
Marques Vickers
Allworth Press
10 E. 23rd St., #510, New York NY 10010
1581154267 $19.95

MARKETING AND BUYING FINE ART ONLINE could just as easily have been featured in our 'Arts' section, or even under 'Collectors'; but we're reviewing it here for its appeal to business readers as well; many of whom are increasingly using the internet to market and purchase. This guide to fine art online walks artists, resellers and gallery owner alike through the process of understanding what's online, how it's promoted, and how to understand and profit from the selling network. From setting up an effective web site to promote sales to locating artists reference resources, art fairs and workshops, and auctions online, it's packed with unique advice specific to the fine art market.

Davies-Black Publishing
1055 Joaquin Rd. #200, Mountain View, CA 94043

Two excellent guides are recommended picks for business and public library holdings alike, promising lasting reference value. Charlotte and Laura Shelton's THE NEXT REVOLUTION: WHAT GEN X WOMEN WANT AT WORK AND HOW THEIR BOOMER BOSSES CAN HELP THEM GET IT (0891062009, $24.95) tells of the latest group of young female workers and why they feel disillusioned with the workplace, caught between a 'go for it' ideal and the realities of the modern corporate establishment. The Sheltons surveyed over a thousand of these women and interviewed others about their work experiences: these interviews blend with insights about the differing views of two generations to show how it affects the workplace – and what can be done to prevent the migration of talent. Dick Richards' IS YOUR GENIUS AT WORK? 4 KEY QUESTIONS TO ASK BEFORE YOUR NEXT CAREER MOVE (0891061940, $18.95) uses stories of those who have found their genius to blend with philosophical and spiritual ideas to indicate career pathways which work. From locating one's ideal image of genius and honing in on methods to enhance it to locating work which furthers genius and personal satisfaction, IS YOUR GENIUS AT WORK links enlightenment and personal satisfaction with career goals.

Rich Dad's Before You Quit Your Job
Robert T. Kiyosaki & Sharon L. Lechter, CPA
Warner Business Books
1271 Avenue of Americas, New York NY 10020
0446696374 $16.95

Any seeking financial independence – particularly a young person relatively new to the world of independence – will find the 'Rich Dad' series in general to be very candid and useful, and BEFORE YOU QUIT YOUR JOB: 10 REAL-LIFE LESSONS EVERY ENTREPRENEUR SHOULD KNOW ABOUT BUILDING A MULTIMILLION-DOLLAR BUSINESS in particular to be an important key to avoiding common pitfalls. From the origins of a potentially money-making idea to understanding the lesson of a 'ten year cycle' and the difference between street smarts versus school smarts, BEFORE YOU QUIT YOUR JOB tells how to become independent – the smart way.

6 Habits of Highly Effective Bosses
Stephen Kohn & Vincent O'Connell
Career Press
Box 687, Franklin Lakes, NJ 07417
1564148327 $14.99

Why do people work hard for one boss and want to quit on another? Quite often it's the boss' management style which is the problem – that, and different habits which may actually work against productivity. There are six habits of human relations which the authors have identified as habits used by bosses everyone admires in 6 HABITS OF HIGHLY EFFECTIVE BOSSES. Models of exceptional supervisory skills are presented for any interested in honing better leadership skills.

Bag the Elephant
Steve Kaplan
Bard Press
5275 McCormick Mountain Drive, Austin, TX 78734
1885167628 $19.95

If you want to land a big account with an impressive sales and marketing strategy which gets that one big customer which can increase profits dramatically, the tips in BAG THE ELEPHANT: HOW TO WIN & KEEP BIG CUSTOMERS is for you. Steve Kaplan is founder of The Different Maker, which provides business tools to help companies small to large. From charging fees and assessing service offerings and competition to profiling sales personnel and approaching a customer relationship like a partnership to ensure big benefits to both sides, BAG THE ELEPHANT is packed with tips and motivational advice.

Married to the Brand
William J. McEwen
Gallup Press
1251 Avenue of Americas, 23rd Floor, New York NY 10020
1595620052 $24.95

Why do some consumers bond to brand names for life? Sixty years of Gallup research into consumer habits and their psychology lend to MARRIED TO THE BRAND: WHY CONSUMERS BOND WITH SOME BRANDS FOR LIFE. Many marketers work on first impressions without considering the reasons why consumers will stick with a brand. MARRIED TO THE BRAND tells how the most successful marketer not only creates the bond, but strengthens it over the years so that consumers come to equate the brand with quality and value. Chapters survey pride levels, common brand dilemmas, and more.

The Jobs/Careers Shelf

Work Less, Live More
Bob Clyatt
Nolo Press
950 Parker St., Berkeley, CA 94710
1413302009 $17.99

For many on the fast track, retirement is too far away: the solution presented here is WORK LESS, LIVE MORE: THE NEW WAY TO RETIRE EARLY – though savvy 'semi-retirement'. With a little advance planning you can 'retire' before the norm of 65 years: author Bob Clyatt should know; he entered early semi-retirement at 42 and never regretted it. Chapters tell how to achieve this state; from living below your means and putting investments into autopilot to creating a spending plan and handling taxes.

The Ex-Offender's Quick Job Hunting Guide
Ron & Caryl Krannich, Ph.Ds.
Impact Publications
9104 Manassas Dr. Suite N, Manassas Park, VA 20111-5211
1570232504 $9.95

Ex-offenders face special challenges in getting their first job: should they tell the truth about their history? How do they meet the needs of food, transport, and new financial obligations while job-seeking? There are nearly 700,000 ex-offenders who leave state and federal prisons to try the job market, and THE EX-OFFENDER'S QUICK JOB HUNTING GUIDE: PUTTING THE 10 STEPS INTO ACTION maintains these folks are employable – if they conduct the right research, become proactive, write effective resumes, and hone winning interview and negotiation skills. An essential guide, packed with tips specific to ex-offender concerns.

When You Work for a Bully
Susan Futterman
Croce Publishing
Box 339, Montvale, NJ 97645-0339
0971953880 $15.95

Employees who work for a bully face daily and constant confrontation with little recourse – but WHEN YOU WORK FOR A BULLY: ASSESSING YOUR OPTIONS AND TAKING ACTION offers such recourse, from exit strategies to leave an abusive situation to learning how to identify a bully and utilizing self-defense tactics to keep ego intact. From financial concerns to preserving job integrity and seeking government assistance, WHEN YOU WORK FOR A BULLY juxtaposes case history examples with practical tips. Very highly recommended: it provides specifics rather than theory.

Let My People Go Surfing
Yvon Chouinard
Penguin Press
375 Hudson St., New York NY 10014-3657
1594200726 $26.95

Patagonia Inc. is one of the world's most inspiring companies, making outdoor gear with the least environment impact and devoting much of its earnings to social causes. Its found Yvon Chouinard is himself an outdoorsman and environmentalist, and provides a blend of business insight and autobiography in LET MY PEOPLE GO SURFING: THE EDUCATION OF A RELUCTANT BUSINESSMAN. He became a world-class mountain climber at a young age and then entered the world of climbing equipment, specializing in equipment that produced less environmental damage than any other on the market. His survey tells how business goals can still mix in play, conscious habits, and social duty. Truly eye-opening.

The Metaphysical Studies Shelf

We Publish Books
Box 1814, Rancho Mirage, CA 92270

Deserving of ongoing recommendation for any interested in positive life changes is Gisi Stupp's ANCIENT FENG SHUI'S ULTIMATE SECRETS FOR HOME AND OFFICE (1929841124 $24.95), a guide which blends feng shui home and office arrangements with insights on systems and personal aspects for maximum well-being. Author Stupp operates Feng Shui services in California: she's been consulting on the topic for years and here offers in-depth blueprints, diagrams, charts as well as theory and insights: everything needed for an applied understanding rather than just overviews. Thomas Lyons' MODERN DAY MYSTIC: A PSYCHIC & SPIRITUAL JOURNEY THROUGH A NOT QUITE ORDINARY LIFE (1929841140, $23.95) provides a memoir one who has spent his life interacting with psychics, healers, gurus and mediums to understand their views. Host of PSYCHIC & SPIRIT RADIO SHOW, Thomas Lyons has worked with the best and worst, experienced group chanting and initiations, and provides an insider's set of viewpoints hard to find elsewhere – all couched in the very involving style of a memoir.

A Course in Astral Travel and Dreams
Absolute Publishing Group
Box 99167, Emeryville, CA 94662-9167
0974056014 $18.95

Any who wish to experience astral travel needs A COURSE IN ASTRAL TRAVEL AND DREAMS: it's a complete program in 'how to', not just a philosophy course, and it provides beginners with all the details needed to know about the Astral plane and how to connect to it and use it. And there's more: a free online course with access to a follow-up website and downloadable mp3 sound files: it doesn't get much more specific than this.

Life Before Life
Jim B. Tucker, MD
St. Martin's Press
175 – 5th Ave., New York NY 10010
0312321376 $23.95

Books have been written before about children's memories of a 'previous life' – but none hold the backing of scientific research, as does LIFE BEFORE LIFE: A SCIENTIFIC INVESTIGATION OF CHILDREN'S MEMORIES OF PREVIOUS LIVES. Dr. Tucker is a child psychiatrist who directs research which has been conducted for the past 40 years at the University of Virginia medical Center: here he presents evidence based on 2,500 such cases and studies, describing stories backed by scientific evidence – but he lets the reader draw the conclusion from this research.

Pocket Books
1230 Avenue of Americas, New York NY 10020

In 1992 twenty-eight-year-old Peter was wakened by two females kneeling on this bed…not ordinary women, but aliens. He was to become one of a group of alien 'abductees' with strange experiences, with a difference: he had two strands of hair from one of the females. It was these hairs which would result in the first forensic DNA analysis of 'alien' evidence, revealed in Bill Chalker's HAIR OF THE ALIEN: DNA AND OTHER FORENSIC EVIDENCE OF ALIEN ABDUCTION. HAIR OF THE ALIEN (0743492862 $14.00) stands apart and alone as a more serious account than most, blending scientific investigation with abductee experience. Lexa Rosean's ENCYCLOPEDIA OF MAGICKAL INGREDIENTS (1416501584, $14.00) is an in-depth coverage to ingredients used in spells, survey herbs, spices, flowers, metals and more in an A-Z compendium. Each listing includes ruler, type, magickal form, and a paragraph describing purpose and symbolic representations. Use this to personalize your spells and create custom mixes: there are over 500 entries.

What the Bleep Do We know?
William Arnitz, Betsy Chasse, Mark Vicente
Health Communications
3201 SE 15th St., Deerfield Beach, FL 33442-8190
075730334X $26.95

It's hard to easily categorize WHAT THE BLEEP DO WE KNOW? DISCOVERING THE ENDLESS POSSIBILITIES FOR ALTERING YOUR EVERYDAY REALITY: at once a science book and a self-help and spiritual guide, and based on a movie as well, it tackles the questions of uncertainty, the nature of reality, and how physical, mental and spiritual forces interact in shaping human reality. Don't expect any easy answers here: WHAT THE BLEEP DO WE KNOW is an overview of science and spiritual questions which sets out what is known about each, and points the reader in different directions where the outer limits of science and psyche embrace. Any considering the nature of consciousness, intelligence, reality, or attitude adjustment will find this packed with insights and lively discussion which is surprisingly easy to access considering the weight of the matters under review.

Circle of Life
James David Audlin
Clear Light Publishing
823 Don Diego, Santa Fe, NM 97505
1574160826 $19.95

CIRCLE OF LIFE: TRADITIONAL TEACHINGS OF NATIVE AMERICAN ELDERS is for any who would understand Native sacred teachings, bringing James David Audlin (Distant Eagle)'s lifetime study of oral traditions and ceremonies to general-interest audiences. From songs and ceremonies to visions, healings, and Native methods of worship, CIRCLE OF LIFE covers spiritual realities, insights on human relationships, and the meanings behind various sacred ceremonies and rituals.

Goddesses and Angels
Doreen Virtue, Ph.D.
Hay House Inc.
Box 5100, Carlsbad, CA 92018-5100
1401904742 $14.95

Commune with angels and goddesses, understand fairies, and join author Doreen Virtue as she experiences a Sedona sweat lodge, visits a goddess temple, and journeys around the world in search of the nature and attributes of gods and angels. Her first-person journey will sweep the reader along as it reveals insights and encounters with high priestesses and the sources of women's spiritual roots.

New Page Books
Box 687, Franklin Lakes, NJ 07417

Take a dose of craft traditions, mix it with a spiritual set of insights into the wellsprings of divine inspiration, and pair it with recipes and crafts geared for celebrations of life and you have a multicultural magic guide which integrates crafts with new age spirituality and well-being. From designing fun clothes for celebrations to creating special gifts for handfastings and blessings, Kristin Madden & Liz Roberts 's MAGICKAL CRAFTS (1564148394 14.99) is something unique in the world of mystic and new age guides, and will appeal to both adults and children with its many projects and details. Eileen Holland's GRIMOIRE OF MAGICKAL CORRESPONDENCES: A RITUAL HANDBOOK (1564148319, $18.99) provides practicing witches, magicians, shamans and Santerians – virtually anyone working in new age spirituality – with one of the finest books of magickal correspondences ever written. Over five hundred topics are arranged alphabetically by intent and range from Zodiac and Yang to speed, invisibility, intelligence and more. References include numbers, plants, sun, medical conditions, ancestral memories and more. WORKING WITH FAIRIES: MAGICK, SPELLS, POTIONS & RECIPES TO ATTRACT & SEE THEM (1564148246, $13.99) examines fairies from house spirits to the outdoors, guardians to elementals. There are not only meditations and plantings that can attract them; there's etiquette in dealing with them and spells to enable the sight – and WORKING WITH FAIRIES covers them all. These are invaluable practicing guides.

2143 Wooddale, Woodbury, MN 55125

Each chapter of Dianne Sylvan 's THE BODY SACRED (0738707619 $14.95) is a treat: it packs in spells, rituals, myths and meditations for women who want to build better self-images through Wiccan practices, and it provides a survey of six divine female archetypes and themes, linking these to a spiritual survey of the female body's importance. Dianne Sylvan has been a practicing Wiccan for decades: THE BODY SACRED offers suggestions for exploring different facets, from The Mother to The Healer and The Dancer, with each themed chapter offering an overview, exercises, and admonitions for positive thinking. James Endredy's ECOSHAMANISM: SACRED PRACTICES OF UNITY POWER & EARTH HEALING (0738707422, $19.95) is for any who have wondered what shamanism is. Earth Education is here explained as a spiritual offshoot of environmentalism, and Shamanism blends spiritual perceptions with understanding of nature's cycles and connections between spirituality and the earth. Chapters do more than provide a philosophical and spiritual overview: they include over fifty 'ecoshamanistic' practices from ceremonies to rituals and point the way to a lifestyle that supports these practices.

Dorm Room Feng Shui
Katherine Olaksen & Elizabeth MacCresllish, Margaret Donahue
210 Mass MoCa Way, N. Adams, MA 01247
1580175929 $10.95

College life is filled with challenges, from handling a sloppy or partying roommate to being broke; so how can the simple art of re-arranging one's dorm room evoke positive spiritual forces? DORM ROOM FENG SHUI tells students how to maximize good energy through proper placement, taking control of clutter and using feng shui principles to improve 'dorm chi'. Appealing cartoon-like visuals and color pages keep DORM ROOM FENG SHUI bright and entertaining as well as informative.

The Christian Studies Shelf

How to Be Pope
Piers Marchant
Chronicle Books
85 2nd St., San Francisco CA 94105
0811852210 $10.95

You've been elected Pope. How to you choose a papal name, who does your laundry, can you keep a pet? Tongue-and-cheek humor blends well with actual facts in HOW TO BE POPE: WHAT TO DO AND WHERE TO GO ONCE YOU'RE IN THE VATICAN. From simple explanations of mass and papal duties to papal schedules and a short Latin primer, HOW TO BE POPE is both fun and enlightening.

The Audiobook Shelf

Highbridge Audio
33 S. 6th St., CC-2205, Minneapolis, MN 55402

Haynes Johnson's THE AGE OF ANXIETY: MCCARTHYISM TO TERRORISM (1565119975, $34.95) receives Kristoffer Tabori's dramatic rendition as it provides journalist Johnson's history of the demagogue Joseph McCarthy and his reign of terror during the 1950s with his anti-Communist crusade. Johnson re-creates the key figures of the times and their interactions – and also offers insights for modern times as civil liberties are being challenged. A timely story comes alive in audio. Jill Lepore's NEW YORK BURNING: LIBERTY, SLAVERY AND CONSPIRACY IN 18TH CENTURY MANHATTAN (1565119681, $29.95) receives a vivid reading by Beth McDonald and tells of an 18th century conspiracy by slaves to destroy New York City: a history nearly forgotten were it not for this vivid story. Audio brings the story to life in a way the written word is hard-pressed to compete with as it recreates events and rationale. Most striking of all is Joan Didion's THE YEAR OF MAGICAL THINKING (159887005X, 26.95), with a dramatic reading by Barbara Caruso bringing to life the gripping autobiographical story of author Didion, who faced the end of a comfortable and happy life when her only daughter fell ill with septic shock and her husband died of a heart attack days later. Her powerful account of the months and years which followed comes alive in audio and is a recommendation not only for Didion fans, but for any who have lost a loved one. Garrison Keillor's LOCAL MAN MOVES TO THE CITY (1598870025, $13.95) presents Keillor's comedy at its best: a funny account of the radio company presence's Minnesota home and roots, and his New York life. Cuts from various broadcasts make for a varied selection of insights and enjoyable listens. Haven Kimmel's A GIRL NAMED ZIPPY: GROWING UP SMALL IN MOORELAND, INDIANA (1598870106, $26.95) offers a memoir of a happy childhood, which stands in stark contrast to the current popularity of miserable pasts. Kimmel's delightful story is funny, warm-hearted, and involving: especially in this audio version, narrated by the author herself.

Audio Editions
Auburn, CA 95604

These leisure readers are fine picks for listeners who enjoy classics and mysteries. E.M. Forster's A PASSAGE TO INDIA (1572704861, $37.95) is a social and political novel of British colonialism in India. An expedition to the Marabar caves ends in a break that precedes the end of the British rule in India. Narrator Sam Dastor brings the story to life in a vivid classic tale. Agatha Christie's THE MAN IN THE BROWN SUIT (1572704829, $31.95) receives Emilia Fox's winning British voice and acting background as it tells of one Anne, who has seen little adventure in her life until she sees a man die in the tub station when he falls onto the tracks. A doctor at the scene pronounces him dead and flees, leaving a small clue behind which Anne takes to investigate on her own. A gripping saga of a woman whose life is changed by a stranger's death. P.G. Wodehouse's STIFF UPPER LIP, JEEVES (1572704845, $27.95) receives actor Jonathan Cecil's decades of stage and screen acting experience, which comes through perfectly for the dry yet comic character of butler Jeeves. Here Bertie faces an obstacle to his marriage with Madeline when his friends find themselves at odds with her. Gentle rivalry and problems abound. Fredd Wayne performs THE AUTOBIOGRAPHY OF BENJAMIN FRANKLIN (1572704950, $27.95), an unabridged dramatic account spiced with reader Wayne's background in stage and film productions. The story of Franklin's early years comes to life in audio as it could not in print, and is based on memoirs he wrote sporadically over a period of 18 years. Shakespeare comes alive in audio with two excellent new Arkangel productions: ANTHONY AND CLEOPATRA (193221903X, $24.95) and THE COMEDY OF ERRORS (1932219056, $19.95). The liner notes on these productions are exceptional, providing not just a complete cast list and plot synopsis but a guide to cd track marks which makes these easy to start and stop. The full-cast dramatizations are outstanding, wonderful listens which even reluctant Shakespeare students will find lively and accessible.

Simon & Schuster Audio
1230 Avenue of Americas, New York NY 10020

Frank McCourt's ANGELA'S ASHES (0743550927, $49.95) won the Pulitzer price with its memoir of the author's Depression-era Irish roots. His childhood poverty and his survival of near-starvation and the cruelty of adults makes for a gripping saga even more meaningful for its rendering in audio by the author himself. Readers and fans of ANGELA'S ASHES will find his TEACHER MAN (0743549937, $49.95) another self-narrated account of how his teaching career shaped his career as a writer. From his encounters in public high schools around New York City to how his lessons with teaching translated to writing skills, TEACHER MAN is filled with moving moments and insights. Stephen King's THE COLORADO KID (0743550404, $29.95) receives Jeffrey DeMunn's excellent film voice and brings to life this story of a dead stranger's mystery. A local newspaperman and a gad student in forensics search for clues; but what they find only adds more mystery and seems to point to an impossible crime.

Brilliance Audio
PO Box 887 , Grand Haven, MI 49417

These new audios are wonderful leisure choices for audiences who want solid readers paired with tested, true plots. Karen Kingsbury and Gary Smalley's RETURN (1593558937, $21.95) is a romance fueled by veteran Sandra Burr's reading as it tells of a shattered romance and faith. Add a newborn baby, a father who isn't aware of his impending new fatherhood, and a family secret and you have a gripping saga. Amy Tan's SAVING FISH FROM DROWNING (1597377376, $26.95) enjoys a narration from Tan herself as it tells of twelve Americans who join an art expedition which begins in China and moves to the jungles of Burma. A tour leader's death and the disappearance of eleven travelers will bring into question ancient legends and the potentials of dangers yet to be encountered in this gripping thriller which comes alive in audio. Rochelle Krich's NOW YOU SEE ME (1596000546, $24.95) enjoys Deanna Hurst's firm and revealing narrative style, enlivening the story of feisty Los Angeles crime reporter Molly, newly married and enjoying fame from her latest true-crime book when a fan's attentions border on stalking. The fan wants something more than an autograph, however – he wants Molly's help in finding his missing teen daughter – and trouble evolves. Margaret Truman's MURDER AT THE WASHINGTON TRIBUNE (1597374393, $24.95) receives veteran Dick Hill's fine style as it tells of a young woman murdered at the Tribune, and a veteran reporter's search for justice. Joe finds himself risking career, marriage and even his own daughter's life in the course of a deadly search for a serial killer. Kristin Hannah's COMFORT & JOY (1423311647, $15.95) tells of a woman who used to love Christmas – until she finds herself divorced, estranged from her sister, and bound for another world when the plane crashes and she must literally survive the holidays. Veteran narrator Sandra Burr brings the holiday odyssey to dramatic life with a vigorous reading. Karen Armstrong's A SHORT HISTORY OF MYTH (1423307690, $19.95) also enjoys Burr's seasoned and professional reading as it surveys the world of myth through the retellings of international myths by authors around the world. From prehistoric times to myths of the last hundred years and the discrediting of myths by science, A SHORT HISTORY OF MYTH is involving. Jeanette Winterson's WEIGHT (1423307852, $19.95) brings the Greek myth of Atlas into the 21st century, using this mythological figure to examine related issues of destiny, courage, choice, and more. Any interested in either myths or social introspection will find this a creative, intriguing listen. Al Franklin's THE TRUTH WITH JOKES (1596000600, $38.95) comes alive in a reading by Franklin himself as it uses political humor to underline a message about the current administration's logic and efforts. Both conservatives and liberals will find the blend of humor and irony intriguing here. Margaret Atwood's THE PENELOPIAD (1423307771, $19.95) enjoys veteran narrator Laural Merlington's smooth voice as it relates the myth of Penelope, wife of Odysseus, and relates it to modern times. A fun retelling relates a new modern Penelope's concerns in this century. All are wonderful, recommended picks.

Tantor Media
114 Mill Rock Rd East, Old Saybrook, CT 06475

Classics come alive in audio for even reluctant students, and three new unabridged audio cd presentations are top picks for students and adults who want vivid action paired with classics. Arthur Conan Doyle's HIS LAST BOW (1400101697, $29.95) enjoys Tom Whitworth's solid reading style as it tells another powerful Sherlock Holmes mystery; Rudyard Kipling's MAN WHO WOULD BE KING & OTHER STORIES (1400100461, $24.99) tells of two Englishmen who set off into wild India to win a kingdom and enjoys Rebecca Burns' smooth accent and emphasis on a classic adventure, and H.G. Wells' ISLAND OF DOCTOR MOREAU (1400100534, $24.99) enjoys Jonathan Kent's spirited rendition as it tells of a brilliant biologist whose delivery of exotic animals to his private island is added to by a shipwrecked man. All are spirited, involving audio listens and are very highly recommended indeed; especially for high school and public library holdings.

Audio Renaissance
175 Fifth Avenue, New York, NY 10010 1-800-221-7945

Prior fans of Robert Jordan's lengthy 'Wheel of Time' series will be delighted to see Book Eleven of his drama, KNIFE OF DREAMS (1593977654 $69.95), sequel to CROSSROADS OF TWILIGHT, in audio: it even includes a bonus interview with author Jordan himself as it pairs a gripping dual narration by Kate Reading and Michael Kramer with the equally complex, involving story of walking dead, impossible deaths, and fractured reality. Rand must confront the Dark One if humanity has any hope of survival - but first he must have all the seals on the Dark One's prison and has to handle an impossible army. In this showdown between good and evil there is no place of safety in the world – and nothing other than two sides. KNIFE OF DREAMS comes alive in audio and softens the complexity of the story line with high drama only audio can bring to life. Margaret Weis' MASTER OF DRAGONS (1593973578, $49.95) receives Suzanne Toren's vivid reading as it concludes Weiss' Dragonvarld trilogy, a story of politics, war and struggle. Familiarity with the prior books is recommended for a smooth continuation of a powerful story of violence, betrayal, and a divided kingdom that incites war and outlaw dragons. A powerful fantasy. Davia Nelson and Nikki Silva's HIDDEN KITCHENS (1593978332, $19.95) receives actress Frances McDormand's excellent performance as it relates the 'Kitchen Sisters' world of street-corner cooking and community food efforts. From a street kitchen in San Francisco to a NASCAR kitchen in the racing pits themselves, kitchen stories first heard on NPR's 'Morning Edition' translate just as well to audio here.

Random House Audio
1745 Broadway, 8th floor, New York, NY 10019 1-800-726-0600

These excellent listens are sure to be popular picks for discriminating audio cd fans. Andrew Weil, Ph.D.'s HEALTHY AGING: A LIFELONG GUIDE TO YOUR PHYSICAL AND SPIRITUAL WELL-BEING (0739314092, $27.50), to its credit, enjoys the author's own reading – and he's a powerful speaker indeed – as it tells of his methods for achieving optimum health without rejecting the natural process of aging. Aging is inevitable, he says – but it doesn't have to prove disabling. Keep mind and body in good working condition as the aging process evolves with HEALTHY AGING. Daniel G. Amen, MD's MAKING A GOOD BRAIN GREAT (073932229X, $27.50) also enjoys the author's own reading as it tells of how to exercise the brain to retain optimum mental health. People stress their brains by working too hard and not sleeping enough, pollute them with caffeine and drugs, and seem to have no idea the brain has its own requirements to stay healthy. MAKING A GOOD BRAIN GREAT tells how to assure the brain lasts as long as the body. Brian Strause's MAYBE A MIRACLE (0739323512, $29.95) receives Michael Louis Wells' off-Broadway acting skills and voice as it tells of teen Monroe, terrified of a sadistic older brother who is a rising star, and a workaholic unobservant father. Only his sister and girlfriend know his inner being – and when his sister slips into a coma from a near-drowning, Monroe is left with heartbreak and difficult decisions. Danielle Steel's TOXIC BACHELORS (0739313401, $29.95) explores dating and love in a novel which presents the lives of three single men who are best friends and confirmed bachelors. Kyf Brewer's narration brings the romance to life with all its twists and turns.

The Library DVD Shelf

Dark Shadows: DVD Collection 21
MPI Media
16101 S. 108th Ave., Orland Park, IL 60467
0788606727 $59.98

MPI is slowly releasing the whole of the very extensive Dark Shadows soap opera on a set of involving DVDs, and this Collection 21 opens with the world of parallel time in 1970, when Angelique tortures Maggie Collins with her supernatural powers and reveals her identity to her father. Forty color episodes on four discs recreate the drama and thrill of the original series sans ads – and if that weren't enough, bonus interviews with major actors, writer Joe Caldwell and TV critic Mark Dawidziak add insights you wouldn't find through television. While prior fans of the Dark Shadows series – especially owners of previous collections – will be the likely audience for this, newcomers will find the logical progression of episodes lends to newfound interest.

ADV Films
$29.98 Each

ADV Films' manga and Japanese series productions are powerful recommendations, offering complete episodes and dramatic, action-packed fantasies on DVD. In 1998 the TV series Shadow Skill was released in Japan to much acclaim, presenting some 26 episodes. SHADOW SKILL: FIGHT FOR THE ONES YOU LOVE (141392141) provides four complete episodes from this series, introducing a fast-paced action set involving fast warriors and fantasy evil enemies. MABURAHO: SURPRISES AND SUSPICIONS (141391179X) tells of a high schooler with a special challenge: facing life as a ghost. Romance and ghostly encounters permeate a fun Japanese account of high school trauma. ELFEN LIED – VECTOR FOUR (1413911579) is the last volume of the ELFEN LIED series: familiarity with the others will lend a more immediate appreciation for this concluding story of a mysterious organization protecting humanity from the Diclonius mutant. Fast-paced action makes this Japanese animated presentation a real winner. AREA 88: TIGHTROPE AT THE SPEED OF LIGHT (1413911102) is a tense animated thriller revolving around supply transports cut off by enemy action and a sniper who holds the base hostage. Lots of jets and fighting action here, which is also enhanced by character bios, interviews, and much more. The complete collection PEACEMAKER (1413912796, $67.48) comes in a fine slipcased set of five DVD packages; each holding five episodes of the Japanese PEACEMAKER cartoon series. A teen's thirst for revenge after the vicious slaying of his parents leads him to seek out a group of swordsmen sworn to protect the capital against rebels – the same rebels who murdered Tetsu's parents. But he learns the swordsmen are themselves capable of the same vengeful violence: should he become a demon and join them, or become a Peacemaker like his father? Expect blood, gore, and plenty of fighting in 24 episodes of dramatic, changing action.

16101 S. 108th Ave., Orland Park, IL 60467
$9.98 Each

Fans of Lifetime television or true story miniseries movies on TV will find appealing and engrossing the 'true stories' collection movies, which are based on true events and dramatized for film. Faith Ford and Kyle Secor star in HER DESPERATE CHOICE (0788606859), telling of a woman's fight against the legal system, which acquits her husband of sexual abuse against their daughter and awards him custody. Mother Jody is forced to flee to protect her daughter and in the course of being a fugitive, finds love. Mercedes Ruehl stars in GUILT BY ASSOCIATION (0788606875), telling of a single mother raising two children who discovers her new boyfriend is a drug dealer. When her house is raided and she's charged as a co-conspirator in his drug ring, Susan finds herself facing 20 years in jail with no recourse. CHOICES OF THE HEART: THE MARGARET SANGER STORY (0788606840) features Dana Delany, Rod Steiger and Henry Czerny in a tripping account set in 1914 in New York, when moral crusaders against obscenity confront a nurse working in New York's poorest neighborhoods. Meredith Baxter and Jamey Sheridan star in MY BREAST (0788606867), telling of a middle-aged woman who discovers a malignant lump and must make a difficult decision while her selfish boyfriend runs away. All are absorbing, moving dramas any fan of true life passion and drama will find impossible to stop watching.

The Literary Shelf

Anne Fadiman, Editor
Farrar Straus Giroux
19 Union Square West, New York NY 10003
0374249423 $22.00

Is the same book viewed the same way on a second reading? Seventeen authors provide a collection of essays to demonstrate re-readings are never the same as the first reading. Authors range from Patricia Hampl to Luc Sante, and their subjects from PRIDE AND PREJUDICE to a science field guide; so the diversity of genre is especially vivid and useful in demonstrating the power and insight of the re-reading. The first-person insights show how rereadings contribute to new perceptions and provide added enjoyment and even new details. A tribute to any book lover who has read a favorite a second or third time and discovered new meaning between the same pages.

Grammar in Plain English
Harriet Diamond, MA & Phyllis Dutwin, MA
250 Wireless Rd., Hauppage, NY 11788
0764128876 $14.99

Any planning on taking the GED, or adults wishing to brush up on their English skills, will find the fourth edition of GRAMMAR IN PLAIN ENGLISH provides over twenty important lessons to reinforce grammar. Practice exercises with answer keys use some of the latest GED writing skills test formats and provide plenty of examples, practice questions, and explanations for review. A recommended pick; not just for students, but for any wishing a refresher course in an easy workbook.

Writer's Digest Books
c/o F&W Publications
4700 E. Galbraith Rd., Cincinnati, OH 45236

Novels are one of the most difficult genres to market, aside from poetry: it requires extra attention to a query letter to create an irresistible pique for an agent or editor's attention – and that's where Blythe Camenson & Marshall Cook 's GIVE 'EM WHAT THEY WANT; THE RIGHT WAY TO PITCH YOUR NOVEL TO EDITORS AND AGENTS (158297330X $16.99) comes in. Query letters, synopses and outlines are all revealed in chapters which discuss the anatomy of a pitch, a submission package's impact, and tips for handling the pitch to maximum advantage. Plenty of examples make it easy to understand why one novel would be chosen over another solely on the pitch. Mel Helitzer works with Mark Schatz on the second edition of COMEDY WRITING SECRETS (1582973571, $17.99), a guide for humor writers who want to master the basics to become professionals. This is an expanded new edition which includes more humor writing exercises, more details on how to write for sitcoms and standup alike, more sources for paying positions, and more markets. Anecdotes and tips from top comics supplement information writers will find specific and essential to honing their craft. Charles Pappas' IT'S A BITTER LITTLE WORLD: THE SMARTEST TOUGHEST NASTIEST QUOTES FROM FILM NOIR (1582973873, $12.99) represents the author's sixty years of film noir surveys to locate quotes and dialogue which pertain to life's challenges and answers. Arranged by decade, these are scalding quotes and even fun, memorable lines and dialogue bits which reflect a love of language and an eye to fun. IT'S A BITTER LITTLE WORLD is a fun, revealing compilation lending to leisure browsing by any who love film noir and literature.

Greenwood Press
88 Post Rd West, Westport, CT 06881 1-800-225-5800

Alice Walker came from a sharecropper background, is blind in one eye, and grew up during the Civil Rights Movement: her biography and literary works are revealed in Gerri Bates' Alice Walker: A Critical Companion (0313320241 $39.95), a volume invaluable to understanding her early influences and creations. From her top Color Purple to Meridian and six other works, analysis of her literature, politics, activism and more surveys her feminist theories, practices and impact. Recommended for any college where Alice Walker's works are taught. Helaine L. Smith's MASTERPIECES OF CLASSIC GREEK DRAMA (0313332681, $49.95) joins others in Greenwood's 'Literary Masterpieces' series to provide college-level students with an analysis of ancient Greek drama. From an introductory overview of the nature and terms of Greek drama to an analysis and sampling of ten widely studied plays, from Agamemnon to Oedipus and Lysistrata, MASTERPIECES analyzes both author influences, history, and the plot and intention of each play. The outstanding college-level set edited by Emmanuel S. Nelson GREENWOOD ENCYCLOPEDIA OF MULTIETHNIC AMERICAN LITERATURE (0313330603, $474.95) is a very highly recommended staple for any college-level collection strong in literature. It's the first to provide a broad introduction to all ethnic American writers, providing over a thousand entries on both individual writers and literary genres as a whole. Over 300 specialists contribute to a reference which includes writers with both international reputations and local fame. Topic as well as author entries make it easy to cross-reference information for associative study, while listings blend biography and review of major works with critical analysis.

Houghton Mifflin
222 Berkeley St., Boston, MA 02116

Jean-Jacques Rousseau was an 18th century literary writer whose works on politics had a direct influence on the French and American revolutions, whose educational analysis affected the world of schooling, and whose Confessions fostered the art of autobiography: the many facets of his original writings and influences which produced them are revealed in Leo Damrosch's JEAN-JACQUES ROUSSEAU: RESTLESS GENIUS (0618446966 $30.00), the first single-volume biography of Rousseau published in English for the general reader. The focus on his last decade of life – also his most productive and paranoid years – makes for the gripping legacy of a troubled genius. American Heritage's GUIDE TO CONTEMPORARY USAGE AND STYLE (0618604995, $19.95) answers hundreds of questions about usage, covering everything from commonly confused words and differences between scientific and lay uses of words to controversial pronunciations, grammar rules, formal and informal writing, and more. With it's A-Z dictionary format, GUIDE TO CONTEMPORARY USAGE AND STYLE offers authoritative and simple details on modern usage and the controversies which surround it.

Encyclopedia of the Harlem Literary Renaissance
Lois Brown
Facts on File Inc.
132 W. 31st St., 17th Floor, New York NY 10001
081604967X $65.00

The Harlem Renaissance was a broad movement of the 1920s and 30s in America which involved all genres of the arts in a vivid spurt of creative growth, and charting the literary movement's works and major players is ENCYCLOPEDIA OF THE HARLEM LITERARY RENAISSANCE: THE ESSENTIAL GUIDE TO THE LIVES AND WORKS OF THE HARLEM RENAISSANCE WRITERS. Over six hundred A-Z entries detail the history of the movement and explain how the writer and their works helped influence and change the face of American literary achievement. From historical studies to literary criticism, primary source materials and quotes throughout make the ENCYCLOPEDIA an important mainstay for either high school or college-level literary holdings.

Wise Thoughts for Every Day
Leo Tolstoy
Arcade Publishing
141 Fifth Avenue, 8th Floor, New York, NY 10010
1559707860 $15.99 1-800-759-0190

WISE THOUGHTS FOR EVERY DAY: ON GOD, LOVE, SPIRIT, AND LIVING A GOOD LIFE appears for the first time in English, with a translation by Peter Sekirin, and provides Tolstoy's daily reflections in a fine pocket-sized book which will make for an excellent gift for any Tolstoy reader. From living in the present to reflections on evil and the afterlife, WISE THOUGHTS FOR EVERY DAY is a fine inspirational.

Remapping the Foreign Language
Janet Swaffar & Katherine Arens
Modern Language Association of America (MLA)
26 Broadway, New York NY 10004-1787
0873528077 $40.00

College-level students of postsecondary language and teaching will find REMAPPING THE FOREIGN LANGUAGE CURRICULUM: AN APPROACH THROUGH MULTIPLE LITERACIES provides an important, in-depth coverage studying multiple genres from popular to elite to understand different frameworks for communication. Swaffar and Arens propose using template-generated exercises to lead students from basic grammar patterns to different languages' meaning and cultural usage, providing exercises which smoothly transition students from the use of tense and narrative to realizing different curricular objectives.

The Crafts Shelf

Sarah Beaman
Firefly Books
155 East 34th St. #5B, New York, NY 10016
1552979598 $19.95

SCRAPBOOKING: 100 TECHNIQUES WITH 25 PROJECTS PLUS A SWIPEFILE OF MOTIFS AND MOTTOES is a project-based instructional guide which is perfect for any who would put together a scrapbook from scratch. From creating text and using fabric, accents, photos and backgrounds to handling loose memorabilia and depicting themes such as travel, friendship and more, this is an excellent gathering of instructions and bright photos to help any beginner put together a professional-looking album.

Encyclopedia of Scrapbooking Tools & Techniques
Susan Pickering Rothamel
Sterling Publishing
387 Park Avenue South, New York NY 10016-8810
1402710313 $24.95

Plenty of books have hit the market covering all aspects of scrapbooking, the new popular hobby of building a family memory book – but Susan Pickering Rothamel's ENCYCLOPEDIA OF SCRAPBOOKING TOOLS & TECHNIQUES is about the only reference you really need if you're an avid scrapbook maker. All tools and techniques are described here, from acid migration and its problems to handling bubbling and edging problems with decoupage, understanding how journaling works, and handling photos and paper. A 'must' for any actively involved in producing different scrapbooks.

Custom Knifemaking
Tim McCreight
Brynmorgen Press
c/o Stackpole Books
58 Washington Ave., Portland, ME 04101
0811721752 $19.95

Ten projects from a master craftsman provide enlightening details on how to make a range of knives – and remain unique instructions, keeping CUSTOM KNIFEMAKING: 10 PROJECTS FROM A MASTER CRAFTSMAN active on the list of recommended picks even years after publication. From kitchen paring knives and forged camp knives to pocket knives and wilderness skinning knives, CUSTOM KNIFEMAKING provides tempering, soldering, and fitting details available in few other references.

Kalmbach Books
21027 Crossroads Circle, Waukesha, WI 53186

Artists and model railroaders alike will appreciate these three fine guides. Nana V. Mizushima's METAL CLAY MAGIC: MAKING SILVER JEWELRY THE EASY WAY (08712162202, $21.95) provides a solid introduction to metal clay, showing beginners how to create beads, brooches, and more from this new Japanese material. Lesson plans are based on over twenty easy projects and provide everything from shaping and use tips to hints on how to fire metal clay with a butane torch, use an electric kiln, and more. The inclusion of Internet resources and a bibliography round out the how-to facts, which are packed with step-by-step color photos for easy demonstration of technique. The third updated edition of Dave Frary's HOW TO BUILD REALISTIC MODEL RAILROAD SCENERY (0890244707, $24.95) is a 'must' for any model railroad builder who would produce professional-quality scenery. From planning the scenery and building forms and shells to support it to choosing materials and colors, adding depth and texturing, and understanding the logical progression of construction, HOW TO BUILD REALISTIC MODEL RAILROAD SCENERY is packed with color photos of successful projects and provides plenty of tips for overcoming common problems. Lawrence Hansen compiles THE BASICS OF SCALE MODELING (0890243921, $16.95), a step-by-step photo guide to scale modeling for bare-bones beginners. The best models are tiny museum-quality replicas of the real thing: the art lies in capturing the element of realism of the real thing, and it's an art presented by THE BASICS OF SCALE MODELING's techniques culled from FineScale Modeler magazine articles covering the basics. From setting up the initial work area and assembling the tools to planning a project for smooth success, this is a 'must' for any who would start on their first scale model.

The Needlecraft Shelf

American Quilter's Society
Box 3290, Paducah, KY 42002-3290

Two excellent new themed quilter's guides offer different patterns and ideas for any with an affection for travel-inspired productions. J. Michelle Watts' QUILTS OF THE SOUTHWEST (1574328891, $21.95) provides a dozen quilt, wallhanging and table runner patterns in a fine set of diverse styles and projects. Bright colors, Native American-inspired patterns, and Southwest themes capture the spirit of the region in quilt designs which are unique – and easily reproduced with rotary cutting or machine piecing. Kimberly Einma's QUILT A TRAVEL SOUVENIR (1574328921, $22.95) uses different assembly methods and ideas to produce vibrant quilt patterns inspired by the author's European travels. From photos incorporated into quilts to Parisian Pinwheels and reflections on Market Day, these themes are unusual and lovely. Both offer strong ideas for quilters who want to move beyond the basic block patterns.

Martingale & Company
20205 – 144th Ave. NE, Woodinville, WA 98072-8478

Some of the best quilting guides come from Martingale, which produces a healthy assembly of new titles almost monthly: these are top recommended picks from their latest and finest. Nancy J. Martin's A TREASURY OF SCRAP QUILTS (1564776034, $27.95) demonstrates the author's technique of using scraps in quilts: a passion which has spanned 30 years and is still growing. Martin tells how she built her 'stash' of scraps for the quilts, and then incorporated them into quilts: eighteen patterns range from traditional to new ideas and all come with her tips for using leftover fabrics to best advantage. Sharon Pederson's SENSATIONAL SASHIKO: JAPANESE APPLIQUE AND QUILTING BY MACHINE (1564776085, $27.95) uses 12 sample projects to explore two traditions – sashiko and Japanese family crests. Here are not just patterns and ideas but the author's own new techniques for making perfectly spaced stitches suitable for quick sashiko-style quilts. Applique and quilting blend with machine stitches for quick and polished results, while projects address problems such as binding and how to solve them with reversible binding, and couching heavyweight threads. Naje Snakk quilts with the sophistication of multi-dimensional designs with Sharon K. Baker's FABULOUS FLOWERS: MINI-QUILTS IN DIMENSIONAL APPLIQUE (1564776107, $24.95): it shows how to create both simple and elaborate applique flowers, then blend them into a quilt project for maximum effect. Twenty featured projects highlight eighteen flowers and show how to blend in yarns and beads for best results, while quilters are provided with basics and then encouraged to create their own flower designs. From folds and tucks to special tricks for creating dimensional results, FABULOUS FLOWERS will appeal to a variety of crafts beyond quilters. Jean Van Bockel's POLKA-DOT KIDS' QUILTS (1564776344, $24.95) shows how to sew twelve full-size quilts plus a handful of 'mini' projects for pillows or dolls, and is packed with lovely, fun designs from animals to circus themes. Materials, cutting and assembly instructions assume no prior quilting background and come packed with color illustration and easy step-by-step instructions. All are outstanding picks.

Silk Ribbon Embroidery Bible
Joan Gordon
KP Books
c/o F&W Publications
700 E. State St., Iola, WI 54990-0001
0896891690 $29.99

Beginners as well as advanced embroiderers will find the SILK RIBBON EMBROIDERY BIBLE outstanding: it covers all details needed to work with ribbon embellishments, from instructions on over sixty ribbon embroidery stitches and patterns for motifs to color illustrations of each completed project, pattern guides and order of work charts, fabric and thread details, and more. A 'must' for any who would work silk ribbon embroidery projects successfully.

100 More Afghan Squares to Knit
Debbie Abrahams
Trafalgar Square Publishing
PO Box 257, Howe Hill Road, North Pomfret, VT 05053-0257
1570763224 $25.00 1-800-423-4525

Debbie Abraham's 100 AFGHAN SQUARES TO KNIT was quiet successful so her follow-up guide, packing in more design ideas, is likely to prove just as popular for both her old fans and newcomers. Here are a hundred more squares which can be mixed to create different, unusual blankets and throws: each with full step-by-step instructions and backed by twelve original projects to reinforce how to assemble the squares. Color photos of each afghan and close-up shots of the squares accompany patterns, sizing charts, materials and more.

C&T Publishing
Box 1456, Lafayette, CA 94549

Quilters are always searching for new project ideas, and three from C&T provide inspiration and new patterns and projects perfect for those with some quilting background who want more interesting projects. Judy Mathieson's MARINER'S COMPASS QUILTS: SETTING A NEW COURSE (1571203001, $26.95) provides new patterns and projects for an old style, using two large projects as examples to encourage individual projects. There are thirteen full-size patterns here, and new circles and rings for backgrounds and results. Color photos pack pages demonstrating each process. Becky Goldsmith & Linda Jenkins' THE NEW APPLIQUE SAMPLER: LEARN TO APPLIQUE THE PIECE O' CAKE WAY (157120265X, $26.95) offers step-by-step instructions for both right- and left-handed stitchers which reveal the basics of applique and fabric combinations. Beginners will find this the perfect starting place for learning the basics of applique. Norah McMeeking's BELLA BELLA QUILTS: STUNNING DESIGNS FROM ITALIAN MOSAICS (1571203044, $26.95) provides quilt designs based on the Italian Renaissance, using familiar quilting shapes in new combinations and patterns to create quite a different look. There are eight sample projects in different sizes which also advise on how to create variations on themes, plus full-sized paper-piecing patterns. These are lovely quilts and fine additions to any quilter's library.

At Knit's End
Stephanie Pearl-McPhee
Storey Publishing
210 Mass MoCa Way, N. Adams, MA 01247
1580175899 $9.95

If you are an avid knitter or, even more importantly, knows someone who can't live without knitting needle in hand, you must have AT KNIT'S END: MEDITATIONS FOR WOMEN WHO KNIT TOO MUCH. Author Stephanie Pearl-McPhee is a 'Yarn Harlot' who herself is a devoted knitter: AT KNIT'S END uses opening meditations to lead into solid knitting advice ranging from tools and tricks to handling common challenges, culminating in a line or two of sage advice. A handy, excellent guide which lends to browsing.

XRX Books
Box 1525, Sioux Falls, SD 57101-1525

These gorgeous knitter's guides are top picks for any who would consult bright, oversized titles with plenty of color and creativity. Ginger Luters' MODULE MAGIC: CREATIVE PROJECTS TO KNIT ONE BLOCK AT A TIME (1893762165, $19.95) uses the concept of knitted 'modules' to create geometrically pleasing designs. From mitered squares to patchwork and stained glass, MODULE MAGIC is packed with fun ideas. Sally Melville's THE KNITTING EXPERIENCE; THE KNIT STITCH (1893762130, $19.95) provides a learn-to-knit book which offers over twenty projects which build on knitting skills, so even advanced knitters can learn something new and enjoy new projects. Alexis Xenakis provides lovely photos of both modeled, finished projects and step-by-step knitting directions to compliment measurements and patterns, while sidebars of information include skills levels, supplies, and details on how to correct common mistakes. Elaine Rawley edits SOCKS SOCKS SOCKS (0964639157, $19.95), a lovely survey of 70 patterns gleaned from around the world, from Iceland to New Zealand. The international focus, as well as contributions of projects by all skills levels of knitters, makes for a wonderfully diverse collection packed with color photos, patterns, and easy instructions. Maggie Jackson's MAGGIE'S IRELAND: DESIGNER KNITS ON LOCATION (1893762181, $37.95) brings a fashion designer's eye to hand knitted projects, along with an Irish flair – but lest you expect complex projects and patterns, take note: MAGGIE'S IRELAND will appeal to all levels, most using simple stitches which blend traditional Irish yarns with new techniques and bits of exotic fiber for embellishment. Full-page color photo spreads model on people and against backgrounds while instructions assume basic knowledge of knitting and directions. A lovely, appealing set of projects knitters will relish.

The Antiques/Collectibles Shelf

Single Action Sixguns
John Taffin
Gun Digest/KP Books
c/o F&W Publications, Inc.
700 East State Street, Iola, WI 54990
0873499530 $39.99 1-800-726-9966

From modern sixguns to antiques, the single-volume sourcebook SINGLE ACTION SIXGUNS: THE DEFINITIVE, FULLY ILLUSTRATED REFERENCE WORK covers everything in an illustrated guide and is a 'must' for gun collectors and hobbyists. Color photos appear on every page along with first-person insights on gun purchases, brands, gun tricks, production specs and more. The first-person comments throughout reflect author John Tafflin's in-depth knowledge of these guns and their history.

Official Vintage Guitar Price Guide 2006
Alan Greenwood & Gil Hembree
Vintage Guitar
c/o Hal Leonard Corporation
Box 13819, Milwaukee, WI 53213
1884883176 $24.95 1-800-637-2852

Vintage Guitar Magazine has been the source for pricing thousands of guitars over the decades, and this expanded 2006 edition of OFFICIAL VINTAGE GUITAR MAGAZINE PRICE GUIDE 2005: THE ONLY COMPLETE GUIDE provides the latest details. Prices are offered for those in excellent condition by 'low' and 'high' prices and are arranged by maker for quick and easy location. Small black and white photos of guitars appear on every page; but it's the values, notes and company histories which make this price guide so invaluable.

Collector Books
Box 3009, Paducah, KY 42002-3009

Bookends might seem an unlikely object to collect, but take a look at the gorgeous ends featured in Louis Kuritzky & Charles De Costa 's COLLECTOR'S ENCYCLOPEDIA OF BOOKENDS: IDENTIFICATION & VALUES (1574324330 $29.95) to catch a glimpse of some outstanding productions. Chapters are organized A-Z by subject: children, felines, female figures and each section features small clear color photos, object composition and rarity notes, prices, and dates. A 'must have' reference for any collecting bookends. B. J. Summers and Wayne Priddy's VALUE GUIDE TO GAS STATION MEMORABILIA (1574324403, $29.95) appears in its updated second edition to provide the latest values to signs, cans, maps and more from vintage gas station days. Bright medium-sized color photos throughout compliment chapters conveniently organized by memorabilia type – signs, containers, thermometers, even pumps and globes – to make for quick, easy browsing and reference. The weighty COLLECTOR'S ENCYCLOPEDIA OF STANGL ARTWARE, LAMPS AND BIRDS IDENTIFICATION & VALUES by Robert C. Runge Jr. (1574324543, $29.95) offers a pleasing layout which lends to quick reference: color-coded sidebars of values accompany bright color photos and a guide which packs in Stangl company history and issues and reissues in an invaluable guide. Very strong recommendations for avid genre collectors, indeed. Volume One of Raycrafts' AMERICANA PRICE GUIDE (1574324810, $19.95) comes with a cd of details and packs every page with small but clear, bright color photos of collectibles still available at markets, antique shows, garage sales and more. History blends with a price guide – and the DVD of interviews with fellow collectors who share insights and tips is not to be missed, enhancing the entire product. Robert and Claudette Reed's POSTCARDS FOR THE HOLIDAYS, 2ND EDITION (1574324754, $24.95) arrived too late for more timely Christmas mention, but since holiday collecting is really a year-round occupation, it's not too late to mention the ongoing reference value of POSTCARDS FOR THE HOLIDAYS IDENTIFICATION & VALUE GUIDE, which appears in its 2nd updated edition. Pages come packed with color photos of seasonal cards organized by holiday along with current prices. The chapters each introduce with a history of manufacturers and approaches to further the educational teachings.

The Black Glass Encyclopedia
W. Virginia Museum of American Glass
Schiffer Books
4880 Lower Valley Rd., Atglen, PA 19310
0764323121 $39.95

Books on nearly every kind of glass, from Fenton to Depression, abound for collectors; but here's one that stands out from the crowd: THE BLACK GLASS ENCYCLOPEDIA, a price guide and history for over eight hundred different animals, bowls, candlesticks, plates, stemware and more. 19th and 20th century black glass was produced by a range of firms and makers: all are represented here, with manufacturer catalog copy accompanying company history, production features, identification and values. So many collectors' glass titles focus on the same types that it's refreshing to see something truly unique in the genre.

The Human Sexuality Shelf

Sexual Intelligence
Kim Cattrall
Bullfinch Press
c/o Little, Brown & Company
1271 Avenue of the Americas, New York, NY 10020
0821261754 $29.95 1-800-759-0190

Plenty of books have been written exploring sexual behavior and health, but SEXUAL INTELLIGENCE is something different: it does into the HBO special of the same name and it explores the origins of sexual desire, delving into both history and health to consider sexual behavior patterns from eye contact to kissing and beyond. From behaviors of particular sexual orientations to human body reactions, SEXUAL INTELLIGENCE pairs color photos throughout with excellent, artistic insights.

Youth, Education, and Sexualities
James T. Sears, Editor
Greenwood Press
88 Post Road West, Westport, CT 06881
0313327548 $175.00/2 Vols,

The fine 2-volume set YOUTH, EDUCATION AND SEXUALITIES: AN INTERNATIONAL ENCYCLOPEDIA is an excellent college-level recommendation: it features over 200 entries written by an international roster of experts ranging from educators to researchers, and it examines the policy and research surrounding youth who are members of the gay or transgender community. Yes, it's very specific – but there's a wealth of detail from legal and social issues to health issues and more surrounding LGBT youth, and hundreds of gay-straight alliances in high schools and colleges, and all are given important details where which would be missing in less detailed coverages. An excellent specialty collection recommendation for professional, academic, and community library Human Sexuality reference collections..

The Health/Medicine Shelf

Immune System Disorders Sourcebook
Joyce Brennfleck Shannon
615 Griswold St., Detroit, MI 48226
0780807480 $78.00

The updated second edition of IMMUNE SYSTEM DISORDERS SOURCEBOOK is a 'must' for any consumer health library seeking a solid resource covering the treatments, symptoms, and options for immune disorder sufferers. From clinical presentation and diagnosis to concerns of heredity, treatment, and monitoring, both traditional and alternative therapies are reviewed along with all the options – even including research still in progress. An excellent guide.

Johns Hopkins University Press
2715 N. Charles St., Baltimore, MD 21218-4319

A wide range of library holdings will want to make this a basic reference; from public libraries to college health collections. Neurobiologist Dr. Elizabeth Adler was herself diagnosed with non-Hodgkin lymphoma, and had to cope with the emotional stress of diagnosis and many new decisions. Her LIVING WITH LYMPHOMA (0801881803 $19.95) thus comes from both a scientific and a personal viewpoint and provides consumers with excellent coping strategies. Very highly recommended. THE JOHNS HOPKINS MEDICAL GUIDE TO HEALTH AFTER 50 (193308717X, $39.95) offers the latest recommendations from Hopkins specialists covering over a hundred major medical concerns of people fifty and over. An A-Z format makes for a quick reference which simplifies the search for information, while sections on disease prevention and color illustrations throughout enhance the information provided. Especially valuable are tips on treatments, options, follow-up and common illnesses that strike after 50.

The Complete Prostate Book
J. Stephen Jones, MD
Prometheus Books
59 John Glenn Dr., Amherst, NY 14228-2197
1591023041 $19.00

Leading urologist Dr. J. Stephen Jones has been nationally recognized as an authority on prostate problems and their treatment, and here writes the perfect consumer guide on how to understand conditions, therapies, and alternatives. The latest developments on detection and screening of conditions is included in a guide which is much more accessible than competitors. THE COMPLETE PROSTATE BOOK: WHAT EVERY MAN NEEDS TO KNOW is a recommended pick, especially for general lending collections specializing in consumer health.

Germ Freak's Guide to Outwitting Colds and Flu
Allison Janse & Charles Gerba, Ph.D.
Health Communications
3201 SW 15th St., Deerfield Beach, FL 33442-8190
0757303277 $11.95

If you hate public restrooms, touching elevator buttons or doorknobs, and go through Purell like a house afire, then GERM FREAK'S GUIDE TO OUTWITTING COLDS AND FLU: GUERILLA TACTICS TO KEEP YOURSELF HEALTHY AT HOME, AT WORK AND IN THE WORLD defines you. Humor and practical health-maintaining habits blend in a guide which identifies just where the germs hang out, how they're passed, and how to avoid them.

The NIA Guide for Black Women: Choosing Health & Wellness
Sheryl Huggins & Cheryl Mayberry McKissack
1501 Madison St., Evanston, IL 60202
1932841067 $12.95

CHOOSING HEALTH & WELLNESS is third in a series from the creators of, a forum for black women, and is a highly recommended pick for any black woman seeking health. Why do black women need a race-specific health guide? Because many conditions are common to black women and a risk for the group as a whole – and most can be solved by preventative or self-help techniques as simple as walking daily. From common skin conditions to handling new challenges at every age, CHOOSING HEALTH AND WELLNESS is an outstanding health guide every black woman should have at hand.

The Atkins Diet & Philosophy
Lisa Heldke,, Editors
Open Court Publishing
140 S. Dearborn Ave., #1450, Chicago, IL 60603
0812695844 $17.95

Sixteen essays by contributors who add a dose of philosophical reflection into the Atkins diet controversy will appeal to both pro and con diet readers. They come from practitioners of the diet, those not on it, and those who want little to do with it. It's more philosophical observation than diet plan – but any interested in Atkins and philosophy alike will find here an intriguing ability to link philosophical thinking to modern culture.

Haworth Press
10 Alice St., Binghamton, NY 13904-1580

Four excellent health titles are fine picks for any home or public library collection, promising lasting reference and value. Joy H. Selak and Steven S. Overman, Md, MpH's YOU DON'T LOOK SICK! LIVING WELL WITH INVISIBLE CHRONIC ILLNESS (0789024497, $14.95) outlines a patient's true-life stories and her physician's insights as it covers the three stages of chronic illness: getting sick, being sick, and living well. From finding a doctor you can work with to coping with grief and altered lifestyle, YOU DON'T LOOK SICK shows you can live well even with chronicle illness. Jack E. Fincham, Ph.D., RPH's TAKING YOUR MEDICINE: A GUIDE TO MEDICATION REGIMENS AND COMPLIANCE FOR PATIENTS AND CAREGIVERS (078902859X, $22.95) offers patients a practical guide to taking medicines, revealing a variety of strategies which help patients follow treatment plans. From understanding how problems result from taking too many medicines simultaneously to choosing a pharmacist as well as a doctor, patients will receive a very basic guide to assessing health care advice as well as assessing drug interactions and routines. M. Sandra Wood's INTERNET GUIDE TO COSMETIC SURGERY FOR WOMEN (0789010674, $22.95) guides the reader through a range of concerns about cosmetic survey, providing details of web site listings for every body part and strategies for locating specific information on the Web. There are lists of internet addresses and basic sites, discussions of surgery costs and good surgeons, plus statistics and search tips. Elizabeth Connor's INTERNET GUIDE TO FOOD SAFETY AND SECURITY (0789026325, $19.95) is also a winning guide to internet research which tells readers how to gain information on a web site's reliability and the quality of its content. From locating vital information on food illness and diseases to specific issues and controversies, INTERNET GUIDE TO FOOD SAFETY AND SECURITY is packed with detail on how to produce the best results from web research.

A Guide to the Fountain of Youth
Dr. Leo Marcus
RoseDog Books
701 Smithfield St., 3rd Floor, Pittsburgh, PA 15222-3906
0805996044 $14.00

Longevity research usually is buried deep in scientific journals inaccessible to lay readers, but in A GUIDE TO THE FOUNTAIN OF YOUTH, Dr. Leo Marcus presents a slim but important synthesis of longevity research selected from the published findings of noted scientists whose work was funded by organizations and individuals seeking longevity. These are books used by physicians, so authority lends to listings on major causes of ill health and decreased life span, from arthritis to common diseases.

The DNA Guide to Brain Health
Floyd Bloom, M.D.,, Editors
Dana Press
745 – 5th Ave. #900, New York, NY 10151
Free Press, distributor
1230 Avenue of Americas, New York NY 10020
0743203976 $45.00

THE DANA GUIDE TO BRAIN HEALTH appeared several years ago and was only recently received for review – but the information it holds has withstood the test of time and makes THE DANA GUIDE TO BRAIN HEALTH a recommended pick to this day. Where competing health titles are quickly outdated by advancements, THE DANA GUIDE remains as current and relevant as the day it was published, providing a resource for consumers which is intended as a home reference rather than a physician's handbook. Diagrams, tables, sidebars, graphs and photos all illustrate important, basic connections between brain health and body health and show how consumers can maintain both. From brain disease-specific chapters on autism, alcoholism, and Huntington's Disease, among others, to more general introductions on brain physiology, THE DANA GUIDE promises to be a lasting reference far beyond the usual shelf life of medical coverages.

Dana Press
745 – 5th Ave., #900, New York, NY 10151
Free Press, distributor
1230 Avenue of Americas, New York NY 10020

Dana's focus is on brain health, and two very important surveys on the topic are recommended picks for any concerned with neuroscience, psychology and brain matters. Nancy C, Andreasen, MD, Ph.D.'s THE CREATING BRAIN: THE NEUROSCIENCE OF GENIUS (1932594078, $23.95) considers the roots of creativity, drawing important links between creativity and the brain. Andreasen is a professor of psychiatry and winner of the National Medal of Science, but her book is most accessible to lay readers, exploring just how the brain achieves creative breakthroughs, whether it be in art, music or science, and adding insights into the role of genetics, environment, and mental health. An intriguing survey. Michael S. Gazzaniga's THE ETHICAL BRAIN (1932594019, $25) discusses normal brain aging, longevity, genetic intervention and other medical processes which challenge ethics on both the individual and social levels. Neuroscience's findings are presenting increasing ethical dilemmas for physicians and consumers alike: Dr. Gazzaniga examines different issues and challenges which complicate matters of science and health: essential reading, especially for college-level medical students.

Symptoms of Unknown Origin
Clifton K. Meador, MD
Vanderbilt University Press
VU Station B 351813, Nashville, TN 37235
082651474X $22.95

Dr. Meader uses case studies to consider how physicians can recognize and treat patients with symptoms hitherto deemed 'imaginary' or unconnected to disease. These case histories are bizarre and unique, but go a long way in illustrating how diagnoses can easily be wrong, and how the methods Dr. Meador developed to diagnose 'nonexistent' diseases can help physicians consider diagnosis more fully. Dr. Meader urges subsequent studies to test his observations, but the real meat here lies in case history examples which are eye-opening surveys of uncommon medical health and disease indicators.

The American History Shelf

Manhattan Skyscrapers
Eric P. Nash
Princeton Architectural Press
37 E. 7th St., New York NY 10003
1568985452 $45.00

The city of New York hosts some of the most memorable skyscrapers in the world: for those unable to personally visit, MANHATTAN SKYSCRAPERS provides a newly revised, expanded edition to present over eighty of the best of Manhattan's skyscrapers. Though full-page color portraits of each are packed into each feature, equally striking is the blend of historical background, architectural insight and details Nash provides in each accompanying description. A 'then and now' feel is created by the color contemporary photo facing a page of vintage or black and white illustration. Highly recommended for any fan of Manhattan or urban architectural style.

Voyageur press
Galtier Plaza #200, 380 Jackson St., St. Paul, MN 55101-3885

Two excellent celebrations are fine picks for any who would relish East Coast scenery and wildlife. Charles Brumley's WILD NEW YORK: A CELEBRATION OF OUR STATE'S NATURAL BEAUTY (0896586634, $29.95) features gorgeous scenic photos by Carl E. Heilman III to capture New York state's many wild wonders, while text provides accompanying background information. The author and photographer traveled thousands of miles to provide such a portrait: WILD NEW YORK covers the state's many different wild areas and provides both a visual and a verbal 'you are there' feel. Susan Cole Kelly's OUR MASSACHUSETTS (0896586839, $19.95) pairs history with natural wonders as it surveys the state's significant sites, from mountains to bio-reserves and scenes of history. While OUR MASSACHUSETTS is primarily a coffee table display, it includes plenty of detail which lends to destination-oriented visitor plans; especially those in the initial planning stages who just wish to get a feel for the state's options.

Boardwalk Memories
Emil R. Salvini
Globe Pequot Press
Box 480, Guilford, CT 06437
0762736747 $24.95

Enthusiasts of New Jersey's famous Jersey Shore will find a welcome focus on the boardwalks past and present in BOARDWALK MEMORIES: TALES OF THE JERSEY SHORE. For millions of tourists the boardwalk lies at the center of a Jersey vacation memory, so historian Emil Salvini's survey of the history of the boardwalks should hold special appeal to any who have visited the area and retain a fond affection for the area. Chapters detail different boardwalks and are packed with vintage black and white photos from yesteryear. Highly recommended: a lovely reconstruction of Jersey Shore history and culture.

Hatteras Blues
Tom Carlson
University of North Carolina Press
Box 2288, Chapel Hill, NC 27515
0807829757 $27.50

HATTERAS BLUES: A STORY FROM THE EDGE OF AMERICA is part biography and part regional history: it uses the experiences of one long-time fisherman on North Carolina's outer banks to reveal the issues of a fading industry and the development of Hatteras Village in the heart of Hurricane Alley. Tom Carlson's involvement with his subject leads him to the heart of a family and a town's struggles and faith in a warm first-person survey which at times reads with the quiet drama of fiction.

The Psychology Shelf

Encyclopedia of Addictions And Addictive Behaviors
Esther Gwinnell, MD & Christine Adamec
Facts on File
132 W. 31st St., 17th Floor, New York NY 10001
0816057079 $75.00

All kinds of addictive behaviors, from drinking and cosmetic surgery addiction to drugs, shopping, gambling, and food are covered in this wide-ranging encyclopedia which charts symptoms, treatments, and recovery processes. Add appendixes of important organizations, state substance abuse offices, listings of controlled substances, and charts of information and you have an excellent reference packed with statistics, the latest research findings, and insights on causes and patterns of addictive behaviors.

Making Peace with Autism
Susasn Senator
Trumpeter Books/Shambhala
Horticultural Hall, 300 Massachusetts Ave., Boston MA 02115
1590302443 $22.95

Parents of autistic kids and any who work with autism need MAKING PEACE WITH AUTISM: ONE FAMILY'S STORY OF STRUGGLE, DISCOVERY, AND UNEXPECTED GIFTS: it provides important keys to coping and discusses the challenges of raising an autistic child. Susan Senator raised a child with a severe autism spectrum disorder along with two other normally-developing boys: her strategies offer invaluable coping insights and shows how the entire family changed and adjusted.

The Autism Sourcebook
Karen Siff Exhorn
Regan Books/Harper
10 E. 53rd St., New York NY 10022-5299
0060799889 $27.95

Karen Siff Exhorn is in the perfect position to write this book: she is the mother of a child who recovered from autism, and covers all the basics with an insider's experience in THE AUTISM SOURCEBOOK: EVERYTHING YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT DIAGNOSIS, TREATMENT, COPING, AND HEALING. Exhorn quickly found a lack of comprehensive information for the lay reader: she struggled to gather this information and her extensive at-home treatment of her son lead to his fully recovery. Here is the wisdom Exhorn gained – and wished she'd had available at the outset – for any who work with or have an autistic child, based on the latest research and studies. Very highly recommended.

Death and How to Survive It
Kate Boydell
c/o Trafalgar Square Publishing
PO Box 257, Howe Hill Road, North Pomfret, VT 05053-0257
0091902576 $18.00 1-800-423-4525

Many books describe death and its aftermath – but few can help you prepare for the loss of a partner. Author Kate Boydell was widowed at the age of 33 and thought her purpose in life was gone. Her experiences in coping with shock, handling kids, organizing the funeral, and the months and years after make for a warm and insightful guide which touches on the low points and how to cope.

As Much Time As It Takes
Martin J. Keogh
Hampton Roads Publishing
1125 Stoney Ridge Rd., Charlottesville, VA 22902
1571744541 $9.95

How can you support those who have lost a loved one – or how can you yourself survive such a loss? Other books on bereavement focus on either one or the other question or consider specific types of loss – most commonly, that of a partner. AS MUCH TIME AS IT TAKES: A GUIDE FOR THE BEREAVED, THEIR FAMILY AND FRIENDS offers a wider-ranging approach than competitors, and provides advice in short sentences with large print, making them easy for grieving eyes to see.

Overcoming Obsessive Thoughts
Christine Purson, Ph.D., C.Psych & David A. Clark, Ph.D., L.Psych.
New Harbinger
5674 Shattuck Ave., Oakland, CA 94609
1572243813 $14.95

If you struggle with violent or unpleasant thoughts which just keep coming back, you may have obsessive-compulsive disorder – and if so, OVERCOMING OBSESSIVE THOUGHTS can help get a handle on the problem. Learn to identify ritualistic and intrusive thought patterns, and learn how to deflect them and turn them away with an excellent self-help guide to why obsessive thoughts persist and how psychologists treat the disorder.

New Harbinger
5674 Shattuck Ave., Oakland, CA 94609

Acceptance and commitment therapy – ACT – is a new, scientific-based psychotherapy which examines why we suffer and what constitutes mental health and happiness. Its object is to examine the foundations of pain and solving long-term problems which can erode happiness, and Steven C. Hayes, Ph.D. With Spencer Smith's GET OUT OF YOUR MIND & INTO YOUR LIFE: THE NEW ACCEPTANCE & COMMITMENT THERAPY (1572244259 $19.95) is designed to help readers overcome depression and negative thought patterns and hone in on values, commitment and caring. Chapters use workbook question and answers and instructions to cement reader insights. Jefferson A. Singer, Ph.D.'s MEMORIES THAT MATTER: HOW TO USE SELF-DEFINING MEMORIES TO UNDERSTAND & CHANGE YOUR LIFE (1572244070, $15.95) comes from a psychology professor who also has a private practice, and provides a set of tools for understanding 'self-defining memories' which offer insights into the 'real you'. All you need is a journal and a pen to create and capture strong memories which draw important connections between moods, psyche, and personality. Case histories show how this approach can help.

The Biography Shelf

Coming Home to Myself
Wynonna Judd with Patsi Bale Cox
New American Library
375 Hudson St., New York NY 10014
0451216512 $25.95

Any fan of country music is already familiar with the name of star Wynonna Judd, so her memoir of professional and private life holds a ready-made audience from the start. Such an audience will find COMING HOME TO MYSELF: A MEMOIR holds plenty of personal reflection as well as autobiographical history: Judd is committed to tracing the emotional journey which accompanied her rise to stardom, and here follows a stormy relationship with her performer mother, her decade of being a superstar, and her mother's dangerous illness. A gripping saga any Judd fan must have.

The Lois Wilson Story
William G. Borchert
Hazelden Foundation
PO Box 11, Center City, MN 55012-0011
1592853285 $24.95 1-800-328-9000

Lois Wilson was co-founder of AL-Non and wife of its anonymous founder Bill W., yet until THE LOIS WILSON STORY: WHEN LOVE IS NOT ENOUGH, little has been written about her life and influence on the recovery movement. Screenwriter William Borchert's biography reveals a determined woman who played a pivotal part in the formation of AA and its sister organization Al-Anon. From her life as a Wall Street wife in the Roaring 20s to her husband's 17-year descent into alcoholism, a vivid portrait of an adventurous and courageous life – and ideal – comes to life here.

Neil Young Nation
Kevin Chong
Greystone Books
c/o Publishers Group West
1700 Fourth Street, Berkeley, CA 94710
1553651162 $16.95 1-800-788-3123

Neil Young is one of the most popular musicians of modern times and has enjoyed decades of fame in the rock world, producing consistently outstanding lyrics and sounds. NEIL YOUNG NATION is more than just a review of his life, however: author Kevin Chong set off on a road trip to research his subject, following the places which influenced Young's music: NEIL YOUNG NATION is at once an account of Chong's personal journey as well as a survey of his findings about Neil Young, rock music, and encounters Neil had with fans and fellow musicians along the way.

Zappa: A Biography
Barry Miles
Grove Press
841 Broadway, New York NY 10003
080214215X $14.00

It may surprise many who know of Zappa only as a rock icon to discovery here, in ZAPPA: A BIOGRAPHY, that he was a classically-trained guitar virtuoso. Zappa holds many facets beneath the fame of his music, and for a complete overview of these worlds, ZAPPA: A BIOGRAPHY brings them all together in an in-depth, detailed survey. Barry Miles knew Zappa personally and was present during the recording of many of his most important albums, so he's much more than an outside biographer and can provide the depth and insights lacking in other books on Zappa. A 'must' for any who would understand Zappa's influences, life, and power.

The Music Shelf

The Complete Annotated Grateful Dead Lyrics
David Dodd
Free Press
1230 Avenue of Americas, New York NY 10020
0743277473 $35.00

A 'must' for Grateful Dead fans is the new COMPLETE ANNOTATED GRATEFUL DEAD LYRICS, providing standard versions of all the original songs. Robert Hunter himself has provided a foreword to a book which offers songs even avid fans have probably never heard or heard right. And this offers more than just lyric recaps: slang is explained, annotations on sources provide insights into the lyrics and their many cultural roots, and comparisons to quotes and literature make for a detailed, in-depth survey unparalleled in its scope.

Kent State University Press
Box 5190, Kent, OH 44242-0001

Nine key immigrant groups from Irish and Eastern Europeans to Chinese and Mexicans responded to their new lives in America through music, expressing the sorrow of leaving homeland and loved ones and the troubles experienced in fitting into a new society. Historian Victor Greene's A SINGING AMBIVALENCE: AMERICAN IMMIGRANTS BETWEEN OLD WORLD AND NEW, 1830-1930 (0873387945 $39.00) surveys the music associated with these immigrants, drawing important connections between themes, immigrant group concerns, and how immigrants expressed themselves. From common sentiments to differing musical approaches, A SINGING AMBIVALENCE holds college-level information and insights suitable not just for music libraries, but for collections strong in immigrant issues and American history. John Vacha's THE MUSIC WENT 'ROUND AND AROUND: THE STORY OF MUSICARNIVAL (0873387988, $16.00) tells of the Musicarnival located in a Cleveland suburb where one John Price Jr. decided to open a unique summer theater. His venture was one of the last commercially legitimate theaters in Cleveland and had a capacity of 2,500, presenting eight to ten shows each summer. From his successful seasons and resident people to his involvement in packaged productions and his strong following, the story of Musicarnival comes to life in a vivid recollection.

Arthur Kempton
University of Michigan Press
839 Greene St., Ann Arbor, MI 48104-3209
0472030876 $19.95

Any who would understand the foundations and early influences of American popular music can't miss BOOGALOO: THE QUINTESSENCE OF AMERICAN POPULAR MUSIC: its focus is on the art and commerce of Black American popular music and its coverage is extensive, blending discussions of such major figures as Sam Cooke, James Brown and others with surveys of the major music label Motown, black radio station influences across the country, and individuals who fostered the rise of popularity of black popular music. A 'must' for any comprehensive music collection.

Exploring Haydn
David Hurwitz
Amadeus Press
512 Newark Pompton Turnpike, Pompton Plains, NJ 07444
1574671162 $27.95

Haydn is the father of classical symphony and the inventor of the string quartet, and receives his own in-depth study in the sixth in the 'Unlocking the Masters' series EXPLORING HAYDN: A LISTENER'S GUIDE TO MUSIC'S BOLDEST INVENTOR. Enjoy an overview of his vocal works, his masterpieces, and his principal instrumental works in a guide which pairs two full-length CDs of music with a critical survey of both popular and lesser-known works. Where other reviews focus on major pieces, Hurwitz's inclusion of vocal works and lesser-known pieces provides a wider ranging examination than most, with accompanying CDs keyed to pieces described in the book's second section. From opening themes to tips on how to listen and understanding, EXPLORING HAYDN is a 'must' for any serious classical music student and deserves ongoing recommendation.

The Way of Taiko
Heidi Varian
Stone Bridge Press
Box 8208, Berkeley, CA 94707
188065699X $18.95

If world drumming is of interest then Japanese taiko drums must be on the list of things to learn about; and there's no better place to learn than through the pages of THE WAY OF TAIKO, covering the rich history and playing of Japanese taiko drums. Bright color photos throughout accompany an introduction to taiko instruments and movement, a review of training and drumming, and details on connected spirituality. A gorgeous presentation discusses taiko past, present and future.

Eliot Wilder
15 E 26th St., New York NY 10010
0826416829 $9.95

D.J. Shadow's 1996 album Endtroducing created a new sound sonic pop music was to follow for years, influencing electronica and reaching out to other forms. Music critic Eliot Wilder follows this change in ENDTRODUCING, which is basically one long interview with DJ Shadow via telephone during 2004. From DJ's passion for music to his involvement in mixing and interactions with some of the key electronica wizards of modern times, any who would understand the man or his music needs ENDTRODUCING in their collection.

Music of the Sea
David Proctor
Richard Bake, OBE, RD, editor
National Maritime Museum, Greenwich, London ,SE10 9NF, UK
0948065613 $26.95

For centuries music has provided sailors and passengers alike with inspiration and consolation for sea trials: the shanty lightened repetitive tasks, composers extolled the virtues of the ocean, and passengers reflected on their journey. It's fitting that MUSIC OF THE SEA should finally pay tribute to these ocean-inspired songs, providing a history of the range of mariner music from the time early man first took to the sea to modern times. Major maritime museums in Europe and America contributed to this historical survey which reflects on instruments, music, makers, and sea-faring experience alike.

The Complete Idiot's Guide To Music Theory, 2nd Edition
Michael Miller
c/o Penguin Publishing Group
345 Hudson, New York NY 10014
1592574378 $19.95

If chords and scales are getting in the way of making music because they are a mystery, it's time to consult COMPLETE IDIOT'S GUIDE TO MUSIC THEORY, 2ND EDITION: it offers a quick course on all the basics of reading and writing music, from chords and notes to scales and audio exercises to develop the ear. A chatty tone makes it easy to absorb all the technical insights of chord extensions, progressions, transposing to other keys, and arrangements, while an accompanying audio cd for ear training rounds out the primer. By assuming no prior music training and a basic interest, Michael Miller has provided beginners with an accessible, involving primer. Highly recommended.

Music Sales Corp
Box 572, Chester, NY 10918

Musicians and aspiring musicians will relish some fine new guides on the market. Paul Zollo's CONVERSATIONS WITH TOM PETTY (1844498158, $24.95) isn't a light interview: it's a series of in-depth interviews with Tom about his career and music, and provides excellent background history and insights into Petty's achievements, associations with fellow musicians, and most especially, his songwriting. Zollo's guided interviews allow for powerful focus, not light conversation, making CONVERSATIONS WITH TOM PETTY much more revealing than anticipated. Joel McIver's EXTREME METAL first appeared in 2000 and was the first of its kind, choosing some two hundred of the biggest bands of 'extreme metal' and introducing the scene. In 2005 EXTREME METAL II (1844490971, $19.95) appears to provide the latest update, covering death metal bands, metal-influenced new groups, and charting the latest trends of a now-established genre. EXTREME METAL II provides an A-Z survey and history of major acts, packs in photos throughout, and is a 'must' reference for any fan. If you're already a musician seeking to break into the recording business, start with J.S. Rudsenske's MUSIC BUSINESS MADE SIMPLE: A GUIDE TO BECOMING A RECORDING ARTIST (0825672953, $14.95), a step-by-step simple guide for musicians who want to become recording artists. From developing songs and gigging to recording a demo, handling producers and booking agents, and getting a record deal, MUSIC BUSINESS MADE SIMPLE provides everything needed to understand the business end of the music industry. Perhaps you're finding it hard to break in but have plenty of ideas for recordings: Rudsenske's START AN INDEPENDENT RECORD LABEL (0825673100, $16.95) charts a different strategy and tells how artists can begin their own labels to take control over music and money. From understanding the legal contract and foundations of what constitutes a record deal to understanding distribution channels and payment rates, START AN INDEPENDENT RECORD LABEL tells it all.

Guided by Voices: A Brief History
James Greer
Black Cat
Grove/Atlantic, Inc.
841 Broadway, New York NY 10003
0802170137 $16.00 1-800-788-3122

Guided By Voices' Robert Pollard has been involved in the rock scene for over twenty years, has been compared to Paul McCartney to Rossini, and has staged live rock performances which stand out from the crowd. Written with exclusive cooperation from Pollard, GUIDED BY VOICES: A BRIEF HISTORY delves into his music and the vast circle of rock musicians which have contributed to his development. From the band's many incarnations to Pollard's constantly changing sound, no better coverage is available.

The Devil's Horn
Michael Segell
Farrar Straus Giroux
19 Union Square West, New York NY 10003
0374159386 $25.00

Fans of the saxophone must have Michael Segell's THE DEVIL'S HORN: THE STORY OF THE SAXOPHONE, FROM NOISY NOVELTY TO KING OF COOL: it tells how just ten years after Sax completed his first prototype in 1843 the horn had traveled across the country and throughout Europe to change the musical world. The sax was banned by Nazis and Communists, and religious leaders alike which deemed the instrument 'profane'. Its volatile history receives a charged, lively survey by Michael Segell, NY Daily News editor who is himself an amateur saxophone player.

Jook Right On
Barry Lee Pearson
University of Tennessee Press
293 Communications Building, Knoxville, TN 37996-0325
1572334312 $45.00 1-800-621-2736

Blues music fans who enjoy solid writing and insights will relish JOOK RIGHT ON: BLUES STORIES AND BLUES STORYTELLERS, a survey of blues life from oral stories collected by person for thirty years, told in blues musicians' own words. Pearson interviewed over a hundred such musicians, and JOOK RIGHT ON introduces their experiences in sections that cover learning blues music and styles, working in the blues world, and living the blues. The first-person narrations provide an intimacy third-person reporting could never equal and make JOOK RIGHT ON an important addition to the vast realm of blues literature.

270 Madison Ave., New York NY 10016

Paul Oliver's BROADCASTING THE BLUES: BLACK BLUES IN THE SEGREGATION ERA (0415971772, $19.95) is based on the author's own radio broadcasts from the BBC, created over several decades to provide a running history of the blues in America from its birth through its evolution. All the foundation are touched upon; from the African origins of blues and how it came to America through slaves to its coded meanings, commentary on events, and even a history of blues documentation itself, shaped by social perception. With its unusual insights into the world of blues broadcasting and history alike, Oliver's perspective provides a unique survey indeed. David A. Jasen and Gene Jones' SPREADIN' RHYTHM AROUND: BLACK POPULAR SONGWRITERS, 1880-1930 (0415977045, $24.95) provides the definitive study on the contribution of African-American songwriters to popular song, covering the careers of songwriters with an eye to revealing how some of the best songs of the era were written by Afro-American authors. Chapters provide plenty of insights on these little-recognized musical writers and utilize new research and original interviews to trace their lasting achievements. A lively work of scholarship, SPREADIN RHYTHM AROUND will reach both college-level students of American music history and general-interest readers.

Keep the Peace!
Mark Huntley Parsons
Modern Drummer Publications
12 Old Bridge Rd., Cedar Grove, NJ 07009
0634089048 $12.95

KEEP THE PEACE! THE MUSICIAN'S GUIDE TO SOUNDPROOFING evolved from a series of articles author Mark Parsons originally wrote for Modern Drummer, and stems from a long-time interest in building rooms for the rehearsal and recording of music. Musicians will find delightful the survey of retrofitting walls and spaces to soundproof and lend to recording and practice acoustics, which comes packed with black and white photos and diagrams throughout. A 'must' for any musician who would keep neighbors happy and create a viable practice space.

Ain't Got No Cigarettes
Lyle E. Style
Great Plains Publications
933 Metropolitan Ave. #2L, Brooklyn, NY 11211
Hal Leonard Corporation, distributor
19 West 21st Street, Suite 201, New York, NY 10010
1894283600 $19.95 1-800-637-2852

It's surprising to note that despite his fame, AIN'T GOT NO CIGARETTES: MEMORIES OF MUSIC LEGEND ROGER MILLER is the first book to cover his life. Miller's rise to fame was sudden and sensational – unprecedented by any songwriter in Nashville in the 1960s – and his hits reached far beyond country audiences to involve mainstream listeners. AIN'T GOT NO CIGARETTES uses interviews from celebrities and everyday listeners alike to provide stories about the legend from his peers, friends, and fans. A powerful celebration of his life evolves.

The International Studies Shelf

The Next Global Stage
Kenichi Ohmae
Wharton School Publishing
1 Lake St., Upper Saddle River, NJ 07458
013147944X $27.95

Both business and political science college-level readers seeking to understand the new opportunities and challenges of a closely-knit global community will find THE NEXT GLOBAL STAGE: CHALLENGES AND OPPORTUNITIES IN OUR BORDERLESS WORLD outlines a radical new worldview evolving from the nation-based economic picture of the past. Kenichi Ohmae is a business strategist who published THE BORDERLESS WORLD in 1990, which predicted the rise of globalization: here he explores the new players of this world stage, and provides both businesses and governments with a game plan for handling new challenges.

Why Europe Will Run The 21st Century
Mark Leonard
Public Affairs
250 W. 57th St. #1321, New York NY 10107
1586483641 $20.00

American attitudes, methods and strategies have dominated the world for the 20th century – but it may prove obsolete in future endeavors: that's the message of WHY EUROPE WILL RUN THE 21ST CENTURY, a guide which discusses the future and structure of democratic processes in a changing world economy. The US still has power – but it may no longer be the driving force in determining the world. Chapters explain how the evolving European Union is offering a broader reach and approach which draws countries in rather than setting up opposing strategies. The Union's influence is increasing – and it is creating a new network alternative to American power that holds the potential of changing world influences in the future.

The Nautical Shelf

Voyages to Windward
Elsie Hulsizer
Harbour Publishing
Box 219, Madeira Park, BC V0N 2HO, Canada
1550173669 $36.95

As a child author Elsie Hulsizer spent her summers sailing in a small sailboat with hr parents, and as an adult she and her husband spent their summers sailing out of Puget Sound and up the straight of Juan de Fuca – also to windward, where they explored the west coast of Vancouver Island over a twenty-year period. VOYAGES TO WINDWARD: SAILING ADVENTURES ON VANCOUVER ISLAND'S WEST COAST charts these journeys and discoveries, using the author's photos to present their journeys in a set of vivid adventures which will appeal to both armchair readers and would-be Vancouver Island sailors. A gorgeous display of color photos throughout makes VOYAGES TO WINDWARD an exciting visual display, spiced with high adventure and not a few practical tips.

The Cookbook Shelf

The Garden-Fresh Vegetable Cookbook
Andrea Chesman
Storey Publishing
210 Mass MoCa Way, North Adams, MA 01247
1580175341 $24.95

Any who have a summer garden know the routine: it's feast and then sudden famine when everything ripens at once, and too often vegetable cookbooks hold the same types of dishes. If you have garden bounty and are seeking something fresh and new – something which embraces ethnic flavors and different seasoning combinations – then THE GARDEN-FRESH VEGETABLE COOKBOOK is for you. No, it doesn't hold the spicy color photos of less comprehensive guides: it focuses on the recipes which are easy enough not to need color embellishment. Try Chicken and Broccoli in Mornay Sauce, 'Zapple Pie' made with summer squash, or Eggplant Pizza. Dishes are accompanied by sidebars of information and gardening tips, from discussions different cultivars and historical insights to the evolution of plant names. A seasonal arrangement assures an easy, solid reference.

A Baker's Field Guide to Holiday Candy & Confections
Dede Wilson
Harvard Common Press
535 Albany St., Boston, MA 02118
1558323090 $16.95

From marshmallow peeps for Easter to Christmas Ribbon Candy and hand-formed Chocolate Leaves for Thanksgiving, HOLIDAY CANDY & CONFECTIONS: SWEET TREATS ALL YEAR LONG is a guide which may have missed our December issue, but which holds importance and value far beyond a single season. Each recipe offers a full-page facing page photo of the completed item, and each recipe teaches basic tricks of the candy-making trade, from tempering and using dry ice on molds to choosing a special type of chocolate to produce a polished finish, or using a leaf-shaped cookie cutter on jelly to make leaves. If you've made candy before you're used to one-dimension cookbooks which either offer recipes alone or go into great detail on advanced techniques: this one offers a bit of both and is far above most in ease of use and polished results.

Complete Idiot's Guide to Cover and Bake Meals
Ellen Brown
c/o Penguin Publishing Group
375 Hudson St., New York NY 10014
1592573711 $18.95

Casseroles are the answer to the busy cook who wants to put a home-baked meal on the table, but most recipes focus on condensed soup and tuna from the can – so try something new with a new concept in casseroles in COVER & BAKE MEALS, covering everything from Lemongrass Chicken Curry with Linguine, Coconut and Bean Sprouts to Caribbean Braised Ribs with Mango, Pineapple and Rice or Sole Almandine with Vegetable and Rice Stuffing. No color photos, but despite the lack of canned ingredients in most dishes, the easy instructions don't need them.

A Taste of Maryland History
Debbie Nunley & Karen Jane Elliott
John F. Blair
1406 Plaza Dr., Winston-Salem, NC 27103
0895873133 $19.95

Authors Debbie Nunley and Karen Jane Elliot have been on a quest to find those who are passionate about both fine dining and historic preservation, and Maryland provided them with the best opportunities to visit restaurants steeped in both fine food and rich history. A TASTE OF MARYLAND HISTORY: A GUIDE TO HISTORIC EATERIES AND THEIR RECIPES thus serves two distinct purposes: as a survey of Maryland historic establishments it provides would-be travelers with a guide to fine historic eating houses across the state, providing an entire page of history to compliment the authors' descriptions of the atmosphere and offerings they experienced today. And as a cookbook, it provides a fine collection of these signature dishes, selecting several from each establishment which have been adapted to home cook proportions. Enjoy Pan-Roasted Scallops with Ginger and Lemon Grass Jus or Buffalo-Style Pizza in a fine gathering. Highly recommended both for Maryland history buffs, cooks, and armchair travelers alike.

New Southern Baking
Damon Lee Fowler
Simon & Schuster
1230 Avenue of Americas, New York NY 10020
0743250583 $26.00

From cornbread to sweet potato breads and cakes, Southern baking holds a wide reputation – and there's no better place to learn the basics than from DAMON LEE FOWLER'S NEW SOUTHERN BAKING, celebrating traditional baking techniques but updating dishes for modern times. NEW SOUTHERN BAKING will appeal to all levels of cook with easy recipes and plenty of tips – and it'll even appeal to advanced cooks who want different twists to dishes, such as a Chocolate Chip Pecan Wedding Shortbread or Sweet Potato Griddlecakes. Recommended above other more general Southern cookbooks, with its focus on baking and the wonderful blend of tradition vs. innovation.

Carlos' Contemporary French Cuisine
Debbie and Carlos Nieto, With Arlene Bronstein & Ken Brookman
Gibbs Smith
Box 667, Layton, UT 84041
1586855123 $34.95

Carlos' Restaurant opened in Highland Park in 1981 and is recognized as one of Chicago's finest: but you don't have to be in Chicago to enjoy the food with the publication of CARLOS' CONTEMPORARY FRENCH CUISINE. Here are recipes for many of his signature specialties, such as Lobster Napoleon, Pumpkin Mousse Cake, and Flautas. Here also is a healthy peppering of color photos throughout to reinforce the finished dish's appearance. Carlos integrates international influences into his French standards – so you'll find many dishes here that cross borders and challenge the idea of what constitutes French cooking. A lovely, appealing guide recommended for gift-giving.

The Whole Foods Allergy Cookbook
Cybele Pascal
Vital Health Publishing
PO Box 152, Ridgefield CT 06877
1890612456 $18.95

There are plenty of 'allergy cookbooks' on the market which address cooking for those with food allergies: so what makes THE WHOLE FOODS ALLERGY COOKBOOK: 200 GOURMET & HOMESTYLE RECIPES FOR THE FOOD ALLERGIC FAMILY different? It's the first to eliminate ALL eight allergens which are responsible for 90% of food allergies. These are: dairy, eggs, wheat, soy, peanuts, tree nuts, fish or shellfish and refined sugar. Therefore, baked goods here are all vegan, there are tips on gluten-free dishes, a shopper's guide for hard-to-locate items, and a wonderful array of appealing dishes from Curried Pumpkin Soup and Chicken Breast with Mango Salsa to Curried Lamb with Apricots over Brown Rice and Spaghetti with Turkey Meatballs. Dishes the whole family can enjoy, no matter what the allergy distribution, are important; particularly since food allergies often run in families but differ between members. WHOLE FOODS ALLERGY COOKBOOK is a 'must' for any family struggling with allergens.

Alessandra Redies
250 Wireless Blvd., Hauppauge, NY 11788
0764158694 $12.99

Over a hundred color photos accompany an exceptionally clear collection of cocktail recipes for any who enjoy dinner drinks, whether they be aperitifs, coladas, or cocktail creations. Each cocktail is categorized – fruity drink, after-dinner drink, tall drink, strong drink – and provides 3-step recipes and a minimal amount of ingredients. From bartender's classics to low-alcohol drinks, COCKTAILS is easy to use, attractive and lovely.

Cornbread Nation 3
Ronni Lundy, Editor
University of North Carolina Press
Box 2288, Chapel Hill, NC 27515-2288
0807856568 $17.95

CORNBREAD NATION 3: FOODS OF THE MOUNTAIN SOUTH is the third such collection from the Appalachians and Ozarks and blends the best of Southern regional food writings – a blend which includes poems, essays, culinary history and cultural insights aplenty. Any expecting a recipe collection alone may be disappointed; but there are plenty of Southern cookbooks on the market – and relatively few Southern collections of literary food writing, making CORNBREAD NATION something to relish.

The Wine Club
Maureen Christian Petrosky
Meredith Books
1716 Locust Street, Des Moines, IA 50336-0001
0696225433 $17.95 1-800-678-8091

Start your own wine club for and with your friends and learn about wine with the help of THE WINE CLUB: A MONTH-BY-MONTH GUIDE TO LEARNING ABOUT WINE WITH FRIENDS. A seasonal arrangement offers monthly varietal focus in a title which includes recipes for complimentary dishes, tips on how to taste and learn, overviews of wines and glass styles, and much more.

America's Great Delis
Sheryll Bellman
Collector Press
Box 230986, Portland, OR 97281
1933112077 $35.00

Deli food is simple food from Eastern Europe; much of it developed out of need as Jews migrated around the world. The origins of deli standards, from rye bread and chopped liver, and the establishments which fostered them in America are revealed in a colorful blend of history and recipes. Historic and notable delis are profiled, there are neighborhood maps and vintage black and white photos, and plenty of color throughout, making this a notable gift choice as well as a library recommendation.

Michael Ruhlman & Brian Polcyn
W.W. Norton
500 – 5th Ave., New York NY 10110
0393058298 $35.00

Relatively few cookbooks cover all the basics of charcuterie, which involve curing: that's why the comprehensive CHARCUTERIE: THE CRAFT OF SALTING, SMOKING AND CURING is so important for any serious cook or cookbook collection. It reflects the author's passion for these techniques of preservation and provides the only comprehensive book on the topic, including all the classic charcuterie recipes for sausages, poultry, and meats under one cover, offering contemporary techniques expanding on traditional concepts, and making the art accessible to the average home cook. No color photos, but the focus here is on instruction and recipes, not glitz – and CHARCUTERIE's importance doesn't lack for color.

Mangoes & Curry Leaves
Jeffrey Alford & Naomi Duguid
708 Broadway, New York NY 10003
1579652522 $45.00

If Asian cooking is a passion and even if your collection is already packed with regional titles, make MANGOES & CURRY LEAVES: CULINARY TRAVELS THROUGH THE GREAT SUBCONTINENT a mainstay: it's as much a travelogue and cultural exploration as a cookbook and pairs recipes with the author's first-person experiences of the smells, tastes, and atmosphere of Bangladesh, India, Nepal, Pakistan, and Sri Lanka. More than any other Asian general cookbook, it invites the reader to sample through the authors' eyes and tastes and creates a sensational, savory set of culinary reflections and insights. Very highly recommended; a 'must' for any serious cook's collection.

Bristol Publishing
2714 McCone Ave., Hayward, CA 94545

Three little Nitty Gritty cookbooks are fine, recommended and highly portable picks. While they may lack glitzy color photos and heft of the coffee table sized cookbooks, they provide easy and delicious recipes which don't need color embellishment to succeed. THE BEST 50 PUDDINGS, SOUFFLES AND KUGELS (1558673032, $5.95) offers a wealth of both sweet and savory 'failsafe' puddings and kugels, joining others in the '50 Best' series but also standing well alone. From a New Orleans Danish pastry bread pudding to a Matzoh Souffle and a Blueberry Bread Pudding, these offer ease and appeal alike. The revised edition of Dona Z. Meilach's WRAPS AND ROLL-UPS (1558673075, $8.95) tells how to use vegetables and grains wrapped in gourmet tortillas for quick meals. From Pineapple Salsa and other sauces to jazz up the meats and vegetables to international influences and wraps for celebrations, this offers a range of fresh, new ideas. Jacqueline Williams and Goldie Silverman's NO SALT, NO SUGAR, NO FAT (1558673067, $8.95) shows how food can be tasty without added sugar, salt or fat. From beef stews and layered cheese torte to easy desserts which leave out a lot of the guilt, the spices and fruits make up all the flavor.

Best Food Writing 2005
Holly Hughes, Ed.
Marlowe & Company
245 W. 17th St., 11th Floor, New York NY 10011
156924345X $15.95

Established food writers as well as newcomers who are passionate about foods grace the pages of a powerful collection which skims the cream from the food writing crop of the past year's books, magazines, newspapers and web sites. This is what makes BEST FOOD WRITING 2005 so wonderful: expect – and receive – only the best in articles which range from reflections on aforementioned cream and its history and qualities to baker Yockelson's reflections on the 'real cake' and its attributes and family bonds involved in a local bread baker's rise to fame. Sumptuous, sensual descriptions of food celebrate dishes and history alike.

Confessions of a French Baker
Peter Mayle & Gerard Auzet
Alfred A. Knopf
c/o Random House
1745 Broadway, 17th floor, New York, NY 10019
140004474X $16.95

Author Peter Mayle shared news of a beloved local Provence French bakery, Chez Auzet, in a prior coverage: here several hundred visits later he and baker Gerard Auzet collaborate in a celebration of baking, blending recipes for sixteen kinds of bread – all packed with professional insider's baking tips for success – with a history and survey of Azuet bakers and achievements. CONFESSIONS OF A FRENCH BAKER: BREADMAKING SECRETS, TIPS, AND RECIPES may look small and unassuming beside weighty and larger-sized bread cookbooks, but don't let its size fool you: packed within its pages are decades of baking wisdom competitors can't match for tone, content and insights.

Egyptian Cooking and Other Middle Eastern Recipes
Samia Abdennour
American University in Cairo Press
International Publishers Mktg, Dist.
420 – 5th Ave., New York NY 10018
9774249267 $19.95

There are plenty of Middle Eastern general cookbooks on the market even those who have larger titles in their collection should consider EGYPTIAN COOKING AND OTHER MIDDLE EASTERN RECIPES an important, basic addition. From Stewed Chicken With Green Olives to Creamy Eggplant and Mutton and Rice, standard Middle Eastern dishes come alive with bright photos, intriguing flavor blends, and appeal. Wire binding with no spine lettering makes this a recommended home library addition.

Brew Like a Monk
Stan Hieronymus
Brewers Publications
Box 1679, Boulder, CO 80306-1679
093738187X $17.95

Any interested in beer brewing probably has had a hand in home brew and familiarity with some favorite styles such as pilsner or stouts, but BREW LIKE A MONK: TRAPPIST, ABBEY AND STRONG BELGIAN ALES AND HOW TO BREW THEM offers something different, exploring the unique flavors and brews of monastic brewing through visits to modern producers in both America and Belgium. BREW LIKE A MONK isn't just a recipe collection, though of course some brew recipes are included: it's a survey of the history, traditions and flavors of Trappist monk brewing in the Belgian tradition and contrasts the products of independent breweries with American and European brewing traditions.

Small Bites
Jennifer Joyce
375 Hudson, New York NY 10014
0756613477 $20.00

If you're entertaining, finger foods or appetizers are surely a part of the occasion, and many cookbooks are dedicated to their production – but SMALL BITES: tapas, sushi, mezze, antipasti and other finger foods takes a more international approach than most, incorporating the finger foods of other countries to provide a pleasing alternative to ordinary dishes. Try skewered meats and vegetables, a flashy Crab and Gruyere Nachos with Charred Tomato Salsa, a refreshing Mango Crush to go with spicy foods, and more. Bright color photos of finished finger foods accent the production and add appeal – and cooks will find the dishes easy to produce despite their flashy titles.

Cooking Free
Carol Fenster, Ph.D.
c/o Penguin Publishing Group
375 Hudson, New York NY 10014
1583332154 $18.95

Cooking for those with multiple food sensitivities is difficult, especially since food sensitivity tends to run in families. Over 11 million Americans have sensitivities to more than one food, so Carol Fenster, founder of savory Palate, a resource for those with food allergies and special food needs, has developed dishes which omit four of the most common allergens. There's no diary, eggs, gluten or sugar in these dishes, yet breakfast cereal, homemade pizza, and granola bars are among the many dishes which can be produced without them. No color photos, but the easy recipes don't need them.

The Travel Shelf

1001 Natural Wonders You Must See Before You Die
Michael Bright
250 Wireless Rd., Happauge, NY 11788
0764158171 $35.00

Some of the world's leading explorers lend their contributions and advice to the extensive travel reference 1001 NATURAL WONDERS YOU MUST SEE BEFORE YOU DIE, which holds very nearly 1,000 pages packed with photos and descriptions of such wonders. From Loch Ness in Scotland to Lake Natron in Tanzania or Daisetsu in Japan, the world's wilderness places are all under one cover, with extensive descriptions charting why they stand out. While some of these places pepper other books, no other coverage is so extensive – or so well laid out, blending modern color photos with cultural and natural insights. Very highly recommended indeed; way above any other 'natural wonders' guides, and perfect for both armchair travelers and travel planners alike.

The Aviation Shelf

Clyde Edgerton
Algonquin Books
127 Kingston Dr., #105, Chapel Hill, NC 27514
156512426X $23.95

You may recognize Clyde Edgerton's name: he's written eight previous novels but here provides a compelling saga in SOLO: MY ADVENTURES IN THE AIR, a biographical memoir which provides the true account of his flying experience, from Air Force training and combat missions in Vietnam to his own personal plane. The joy Edgerton holds for planes and flying shines from every chapter: any with an affection for planes will love this celebration of flight, which holds a healthy dose of military aviation insights.

Wings of Change
Ron Dick and Dan Patterson
Boston Mills Press
c/o Firefly Books
c/o 155 E. 34th St., #5B, New York NY 10016
1550464280 $39.95

Ron Dick and Dan Patterson's AVIATION CENTURY WINGS OF CHANGE joins others in the Aviation Century series to provide the story of commercial aviation through the end of the 20th century. WINGS OF CHANGE is more than just a focus on jumbo jets, however: it follows aviation developments through the end of the 20th century, from jets to private aircraft, lighter-than-air flight, and more. Plenty of black and white and color photos liberally stud pages packed with detail and information, surveying key aviation companies and developers, contributors to technological advancements, pilots, and more. Memorabilia, building advancements, and innovations for the future aren't neglected, either. Any who seek a comprehensive review of this century's achievements in aviation must have WINGS OF CHANGE in their collection.

The Railroading Shelf

Next Stop Honolulu!
Jim Chiddix & MacKinnon Simpson
Sugar Cane Press
Box 161201, Honolulu, HI 96816
0970621310 $59.95

If you're a rail buff you'll already know most rail books focus on the mainland railways and give little recognition to Hawaii: to fill the gap choose NEXT STOP HONOLULU: THE STORY OF THE OAHU RAILWAYS & LAND COMPANY. You can't get any more comprehensive than NEXT STOP HONOLULU, which traces the growth of the Oahu Railway from its roots when a New Englander fell off a rented horse and was stranded in Hawaii to its establishment as an opportunity for the sugar cane industry to become a profitable crop on Oahu. It comes packed with vintage photos, color illustration, maps, charts, reproductions, and history tracing almost sixty years of OR&L achievements. A truly outstanding, definitive achievement.

The Self-Help Shelf

Strength in the Storm
Nilgiri Press
Box 256, Tomales, Ca 94971
1586380176 $14.00

We can't control what life gives us; we can only control our own responses to it: that's the message of STRENGTH IN THE STORM: CREATING CALM IN DIFFICULT TIMES, a survey of lessons which can be learned from children, crisis, and even eating. Reflections on life and handling crisis rely on Buddha's teachings to provide wisdom and philosophical and spiritual strength.

Ponders Proverbs & Principles
Rodney R. Weckworth
Publishers Design Group
Box 37, Roseville, CA 94578
1929170165 $14.95

PONDERS, PROVERBS & PRINCIPLES is an inspirational motivator which is reviewed here for its ability to provide fun, character building principles in an easily-readable form. From aging and courage to goals, conscience and direction in life, PONDERS PROVERBS & PRINCIPLES is packed with vignettes and one-liners to aid mental health.

Live Your Life Pain Free
John M. Stamatos, MD
Magni Company
Box 840, McKinney, TX 75070
1882330803 $14.95

As more and more people live longer, chronic pain often becomes part of the quality of life equation – yet relatively few books discuss how to handle the latest discoveries which promise pain management. LIVE YOUR LIFE PAIN FREE: MEDICAL DISCOVERIES THAT STOP CHRONIC PAIN presents the insights of not just physician John M. Stamos, but three other physicians and an APRN who work with him. Chapters discuss different pain syndromes and different treatment approaches, injection versus oral medication therapies, exercises to maintain pain relief, and how to handle the most common of pains: neck and back pain. An invaluable consumer's reference for any who would age with ease.

How to Stop Backing Down & Start Talking Back
Lisa Frankfort, Ph.D. & Patrick Fanning
New Harbinger Publications
5674 Shattuck Ave., Oakland, CA 94609
1572244178 $13.95

Have troubles saying 'no'? You will find new assertive strategies abound in HOW TO STOP BACKING DOWN & START TALKING BACK: a guide to honing the skill of standing your ground and communicating well. Stop verbal assaults with a snappy comeback, make reasoned arguments, and learn how to deliver the truth in a guide which uses typical scenarios to show how.

The Gaming Shelf

The Imagery of Chess Revisited
Larry List, Editor
George Braziller
171 Madison Ave., New York, NY 10016
0807615552 $49.95

At once an art history title and a special source of interest to chess players, THE IMAGERY OF CHESS REVISITED is an outstanding survey of the 1944-45 exhibition of the same name held in New York City, which hosted participants from famous European expatriates and American modernists alike. All contributed chess sets for the project and exhibition, and many produced other chess-related art, from paintings to photos. The IMAGERY OF CHESS REVISITED project grew out of a project to create an exact replica of Isamu Noguchi's 'lost' red and green plastic chess set designed for the original exhibition, and holds numerous previously unpublished works and images which will prove of special interest to collectors, artists and gamers alike.

Virtuosos of Juggling
Karl-Heinz Ziethen & Alessandro Serena
Renegade Juggling
Box 406, Santa Cruz, CA 95061
0974184802 $26.95

There are plenty of 'how to' books on the market on juggling and at casual glance one might be prepared to assume VIRTUOSOS OF JUGGLING will be yet another: but look again, it's a rare history of performance jugglers surveying a vast 4,000 years of juggling as game and art form. The history is well detailed, covering both teachers and schools and venues ranging from circus to stage. Considerations of both artistry and audience demands compliment biographical sketches of key jugglers and the companies which fostered their talents, while black and white photos throughout capture the action. There are many juggling manuals on the market, but if you wish for a history of jugglers and their influences and techniques, VIRTUOSOS OF JUGGLING shouldn't be missed.

Handicapping the Wall Street Way
Mark E. Ripple
Eclipse Press
PO Box 919003, Lexington, KY 40591-9003
National Book Network, distributor
4270 Boston Way, Suite 200, Lanham, MD 20706
1581501269 $12.95 1-800-582-5604

If you play the horses regularly you'll want to keep the insights of HANDICAPPING THE WALL STREET WAY: PICKING EXTRA WINNERS AT THE TRACK close at hand: it's a slim handbook but packed with insights analyzing the betting market, the psychology involved, strategies for successful horseplaying at the track, and developing an effective personal risk profile to hone risk and skills. A very basic, excellent introduction to handicapping at the horse races!

Master Point Press
331 Douglas Ave., Toronto, Ontario M5M 1H2, Canada

The second edition of Julian Pottage's CLUES FROM THE BIDDING AT BRIDGE (1894154967, $16.95) is out, and it's a fine detailed account of tipoffs of winning plays in bidding. Defenders who base their strategy on the declarer's bid often find their move flawed: CLUES FROM THE BIDDING AT BRIDGE tells how to hone other clue detection skills, from making recoveries and understanding detection errors to boldly bidding and shock recovery. Pair this with Terence Reese & Julian Pottage's THE EXTRA EDGE IN PLAY AT BRIDGE (1894154975, $16.95), also in its revised second edition to cover a range of techniques, from making the most of a single suit to understanding timing and deceiving opponents about what's being held. Examples of 1NT opening strategies and analysis of pros and cons provide an excellent set of lessons. Danny Kleinman's 365 WINNING BRIDGE TIPS (1897106041, $21.95) gathers a range of questions about bridge for both beginners and intermediate players, addressing the basic same issues which tend to come up each time a bridge game is entered. Examples of matchpoints, lead strategies, risk options, and more receive clear examples and discussion. Ned Downey and Ellen Pomer's STANDARD BIDDING WITH SAYC (1897106033, $17.95) narrows the discussion to the popular online playing system 'Standard American Yellow Card' or SAYC. Beginners and those with some playing background will find this the first explanation to go into depth and detail about how SAYC works, explaining the different auctions, responders, and methods unique to SAYC.

The True Adventure Shelf

Yossi Ghinsberg
Boomerang New Media
c/o Greenleaf Book Group
4425 MopacS. #600, Longhorn Bldg, 3rd Floor, Austin, TX 78735
0977171906 $23.95

Author Yossi Ghinsberg along with Marcus and Kevin agree to accompany Karl to Indian villages in the South American rainforest thinking it will be the backpacking adventure of a lifetime: what they don't realize is Yossi will find himself alone in a struggle to survive in the heart of the Amazon. JUNGLE is his autobiography of a survival challenge few others will face: it provides first-person high drama from its first page telling of his meeting with Marcus and others to his struggle to traverse the Amazon alone, without knowledge of wilderness survival methods. His first-person journey creates a 'you are there' atmosphere throughout and makes JUNGLE: A HARROWING TRUE STORY OF SURVIVAL impossible to put down.

Ten Hours Until Dawn
Michael J. Tougias
St. Martin's Press
175 – 5th Ave., New York NY 10010
0312334354 $24.95

Deserving of ongoing recommendation as a fantastic true life adventure involving a crew in trouble at sea and those who risked their lives to save them is TEN HOURS UNTIL DAWN: THE TRUE STORY OF HEROISM AND TRAGEDY ABOARD THE CAN DO. A Coast Guard boat which responds to a wrecked tanker's Mayday calls during a blizzard in 1978 finds itself in trouble, and only a pilot boat in the area, the Can Do, can help in the midst of one of the worst storms of the decade. Dozens of interviews and audio tapes recorded during the crisis lend to this dramatic true-life story of a rescue at sea against all odds.

Off the Map
Fergus Fleming
Atlantic Monthly Press
841 Broadway, New York NY 10003
0871138999 $24.95

For a blend of history and true-life stories of survival and adventure, try the classics told in OFF THE MAP: TALES OF ENDURANCE AND EXPLORATION. Fergus Fleming is a narrative historian with many books to his name: OFF THE MAP uses high drama, a touch of humor, and lively themes to bring to life the journeys and sometimes the harrowing experiences of explorers from early to modern times. Perfect for the history buff who enjoys the action and high drama of true-life drama paired with the insights of historical fact and biography.

North of Unknown
Randall Silvis
Lyons Press
Box 480, Guilford, CT 06437
1592287557 $22.95

Any who enjoy history blended with adventure will relish the turn-of-the-century adventurer Mina Hubbard, who journeyed into the Labrador wilderness and changed from a rural nurse into a celebrated female explorer. Mina's husband died of starvation while trying to map Labrador's interior in 1903: wife Mina was devastated not only by his death, but by his partner's accusation that the expedition failed due to her husband's incompetence. Mina launched her own expedition simultaneous to partner Dillon Wallace's second attempt: she followed her late husband's original route and with a native crew won the race to chart Labrador – and became the first white women to contact the elusive Naskapis Indians. Original source material and memoirs blend with Randall Silvis' masterful history in NORTH OF UNKNOWN: MINA HUBBARD'S EXTRAORDINARY EXPEDITION INTO THE LABRADOR WILDERNESS.

The Pets/Wildlife Shelf

Congratulations! It's a Dog!
D. Caroline Coile, Ph.D.
250 Wireless Blvd., Hauppauge, NY 11788
0764131230 $11.99

You're about to introduce a new puppy into your home: and now is also the best time to understand dog psychology and needs. No better guide to dog psychology is available than D. Caroline Coile's CONGRATULATIONS! IT'S A DOG! TRAINING AND BEHAVIOR TIPS FOR THE NEWEST MEMBER OF YOUR FAMILY. From how to identify with a dog and communicate to understanding dog habits and non-verbal messages, chapters survey mixed messages and how human/dog communications can be improved from Day One.

The Golden Retriever Puppy Handbook
R. Ann Johnson
Darwin Press
Box 2202, Princeton, NJ 08543
0878501630 $27.50

Golden retriever puppies are special: any seeking to understand and raise a superior breed dog will appreciate THE GOLDEN RETRIEVER PUPPY HANDBOOK: THE CARE AND TRAINING OF A GOLDEN RETRIEVER PUPPY FROM SEVEN WEEKS THROUGH TWELVE MONTHS. From acquisition to the puppy's first vet visit and the basics of feeding, the handbook packs in everything needed to handle the special requirements of the breed. An in-depth, highly recommended pick.

All About Aussies
Jeanne Joy Hartnagle-Taylor
Alpine Publications
Box 7027, Loveland, CO 80537
157779074X $49.95

This is no light coverage from an outsider, but an in-depth survey of the Australian Shepard breed by a third generation breeder who has been involved in their training and upkeep since childhood. And if ALL ABOUT AUSSIES: THE AUSTRALIAN SHEPHERD A TO Z sounds familiar, that's because it appears here in a brand new 3rd updated edition which offers not just new photos, but a new chapter devoted to Miniature Aussies. All the basics of the breed, and the show business for Aussies, are thoroughly explained in this 'bible' of detail, highly recommended.

The Mystery/Suspense Shelf

Poisoned Pen Press
6962 E. First Ave. #103, Scottsdale, AZ 85251

Three excellent mysteries are gripping adventures, hard to put down. Jane Finnis' A BITTER CHILL (1590581938, $24.95) is a powerful debut mystery set in A.D. 95, when Roman settles prepare to celebrate Saturnalia. A female innkeeper looks forward to a peaceful holiday when her brother interjects with a dangerous message: the enemy in Rome is trying to destroy the family by spreading rumors they're plotting against Caesar. Add a protection racket and quarrels and you have a fast-paced, multi-faceted mystery packed with conspiracies and adventure. Don Proter's DEADLY DETAIL (1590581911, $24.95) presents the retired pilot's story of a friend's violent death and his investigation into possible assassination which may threaten his friend's wife, next. The two find themselves on the run, struggling with grief and determined murderers. Kate Charles' EVIL INTENT (1590582004, $24.95) tells of a woman recovering from the end of an engagement. When male colleagues in the clergy become hostile, one Father Adimola is the worst: when he's found murdered, her friend becomes a suspect and Callie must harness all her skills and faith to prove her friend innocent. All are gripping, diverse plots far from the norm and packed with unexpected twists and turns.

The Loch
Steve Alten
c/o Greenleaf Book Group
4425 Mapoc South #600, Longhorn Bldg, 3rd Floor, Austin, TX 78735
0976165902 $27.95

Ongoing, gripping action marks a drama involving an ancient legend, legend and a marine biologist who enters a possible murder case where a lake monster – and Zach's father - is the suspect. In order to prove his father innocent Zach must uncover the truth behind the Loch monster, fighting rival scientists and true believers to uncover the reality. A gripping blend of murder mystery and adventure evolves.

The Fiction Shelf

Bewitched, Bothered and Bewildered
Maggie Shayne
Berkley Sensation
375 Hudson St., New York NY 10014
0425205762 $13.00

For the first time under one convenient cover come three of bestseller Maggie Shayne's supernatural romances to please leisure readers who look a good blend of paranormal and love. EVERYTHING SHE DOES IS MAGICK tells of matchmaking witches who choose Nathan as the perfect mate for their baby niece; MUSKETEER BY MOONLIGHT tells of a lady PI whose spell of protection conjures up an unwelcome musketeer's attentions, and CON AND THE CRUSADER tells of a man's unwitting journey into the past where he's mistaken for a criminal – and only love can set him free. An exotic, fun blend of romance and intrigue with more than a strong dose of the paranormal makes all these short stories winner.

Ghost of a Chance
Susan Hepburn
Allison & Busby
c/o International Publishers Marketing
22841 Quicksilver Dr., Dulles, VA 20166
0749083832 18.99 Brit. pounds

Mike Brodie is a professional musician and voice-over specialist who spends her time rushing between jobs; so when she decides it's time for a vacation she heads for a stately country home maintained by a friend anticipating relaxation – until she's attacked by a group of men. Her idyllic hide-away is about to turn dangerous as she realizes the local small village is under attack – and when she becomes personally involved in discovering a body.

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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