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California Bookwatch

Volume 11, Number 6 June 2016 Home | CALBW Index

Table of Contents

Reviewer's Choice Health/Medicine Shelf LGBT Studies Shelf
Needlecraft Shelf Computer Shelf Gardening Shelf
Education Shelf Photography Shelf Architecture Shelf
Philosophy Shelf Audiobook Shelf Mystery/Suspense Shelf
Fiction Shelf Cookbook Shelf Literary Studies Shelf
Mathematics Shelf Gun Shelf Crafts Shelf
Sports Shelf Fantasy/SciFi Shelf Metaphysical Studies Shelf
California Shelf    

Reviewer's Choice

Virtual Billions
Eric Geissinger
Prometheus Books
59 John Glenn Drive, Amherst, NY 14228-2197
9781633881440, $25.00,

Virtual Billions: The Genius, the Drug Lord, and the Ivy League Twins Behind the Rise of Bitcoin discusses something many may know little about: the rise of digital currency, introduced in 2009, which is worth $14 billion today, less than a decade later. More than just a story about Bitcoin, it's a saga of the entire world of cyber currency and those who have crafted and advocated it, taking a round-the-world tour of personalities, processes, strategies, and more. Issues such as hacking services, counterfeit money, murder, and financial subterfuge are all covered in a lively text that requires no prior familiarity with banking, international currency, or computers in order to prove both accessible and enlightening.

Whatever Happened to the Metric System?
John Bemelmans Marciano
Bloomsbury Press
175 Fifth Avenue, Suite 315, New York, NY 10010
9781608199402, $17.00,

Whatever Happened to the Metric System? How America Kept its Feet provides a powerful history about the metric system used by the rest of the world, and why the U.S. never adopted it. Some may recall that in the 1970s there was actually a push for change and the U.S. finally appeared ready to switch from its system - but the reasons why it never happened are covered in detail here. The result is a powerful story of politics, math, international and domestic struggle and more - an eye-opening read that is lively enough to appeal to general interest readers whether or not they have any affinity for math.

101 Magic Tricks Any Time, Any Place
Bryan Miles
c/o Quarto Publishing Group USA
400 First Avenue North, Suite 400, Minneapolis, MN 55401-1722
9781631590726, $19.99,

101 Magic Tricks Any Time, Any Place may sound like another ordinary how-to title for novices looking to make magic, but it offers something different: an ability to work tricks based on existing skill levels, color photos which clarify the motions and results defining the trick, profiles of famous magicians, and clear requirements and routines for successful showmanship. Add all these together for a wider-ranging set of contemporary magic tricks than most, highly recommended as a colorful encouraging guide that novices, especially, can appreciate.

The Health/Medicine Shelf

CRC Press
6000 NW Broken Sound Parkway NW, Suite 300, Boca Raton, FL 33487

The second updated edition of Gail A. Cresci's Nutrition Support for the Critically Ill Patient: A Guide to Practice (9781439879993, $139.95) has been completely revised and updated and provides college-level nutrition readers and professionals alike with a very specific critical examination of nutrition guidelines for the chronically ill or critically ill patient. Chapters survey fluid, electrolyte and enteral feeding challenges, gathering together literature, studies, and research from a variety of sources and providing expert references, tables and charts, statistics, and much supporting information. From different nutrition therapy approaches to organ failures and other complications, this offers a wide-ranging, important reference to any who face the special challenges of feeding a critically ill patient. Taylor C. Wallace edits Dietary Supplements in Health Promotion (9781482210347, $99.95) is recommended for any health collection strong in nutrition, and covers dietary supplements - a market that is experiencing rapid growth and changes. This book discusses how supplements work to support health and provides information on nutrients, common gaps, and benefits of various forms of supplements from vitamins and probiotics to flavonoids. The latest health research on supplements explores their applications and use, provides the latest research, and summarizes studies and findings for an industry that is often replete with myths and misinformation. Charts, graphs, studies and conclusions contribute to a powerful survey recommended for any college-level or clinical health reference library; especially those strong in nutritional studies. Diane Kraft and Ara DerMarderosian's The A-Z Guide to Food as Medicine (9781498735230, $69.95) is a solid, in-depth reference for any health collection strong in nutrition, and provides a dictionary aimed at health care professionals which indexes over two hundred foods, nutrients, food groups, and more. At-a-glance reference information offers the latest scientific discoveries and new guidelines on food and physiological effects of diet, providing a guide based on the latest scientific investigations and offering descriptions of tests and review processes. For an authoritative and concise reference, this can't be beat.

The LGBT Studies Shelf

Lesbian Love Addiction
Lauren D. Costine, PhD
Rowman & Littlefield
c/o Rowman & Littlefield Publishing Group
4501 Forbes Blvd., Suite 200, Lanham, MD 20706
9781442248083, $35.00,

Lesbian Love Addiction: Understanding the Urge to Merge and How to Heal When Things Go Wrong discusses the phenomenon of love addiction that many lesbians suffer from, discussing the kinds of behaviors that lead to constant failed relationships and how the drive to merge with another at the cost of one's identity results in dysfunctional relationships. It's a common adage that lesbians meet, fall in love, and move in with one another in very short time frames; but Lesbian Love Addiction analyzes why, and provides important insights not just into behaviors, but how to modify them for greater success. The result is highly recommended for any psychology or women's issues collection.

The Needlecraft Shelf

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

Linda J. Hahn's Rock That Quilt Block Hourglass (9781604604030, $24.95) offers quilters a step-by-step specific guide to creating the hourglass quilt block and demonstrates how just four hourglass blocks can be used to create a number of quilt designs. From a 'Time Travel' design in a virtual rainbow of colors to a 'Sunrise/Sunset' motif, quilters should expect designs that can be made using precut approaches that stitch together color blocks and contrast them with different backgrounds. The result is an appealing and eye-catching set of designs that provide new ways of piecing and using quilt blocks. Julie Sefton's Build-a-Barn: No Pattern Construction (9781604604115, $24.95) teaches how to translate the barn image into barn blocks that can be pieced into a sampler or quilting project. While one might think that this subject would be limited, in fact there are many options available using the barn motif, as Sefton demonstrates with pages of free piecing construction techniques centered around the barn theme. Packed with step-by-step color photos and instructions, Build-A-Barn is a perfect pick for quilters seeking something different.

Martingale & Company
19021 - 120th Avenue NE, Suite 102, Bothell, WA 98011

Jeanne Large and Shelley Wicks' Here Comes Spring: Fresh and Fun Quilted Projects for Your Home (9781604687231, $26.99) offers a range of projects, including throws, appliques, table runners, bags, pillows, and more home-oriented projects that provide simple piecing applique and a seasonal flavor to celebrate Spring. From fat quarter quilts and fat eighths spring colors to reminders in quilt form to enjoy the outdoors, this is a fun and inspiring guide for any who would hone their quilting skills with seasonal projects. Karen M. Burns compiles Terrific T-Shirt Quilts (9781604667033, $18.99) in a compilation that teaches how to transform a favorite set of tee shirts into a quilt. Lest readers think that they need a closet full of tees to do so, it should be advised that infant to adult clothing, from tees to jerseys and dance wear, can be used; while motifs can be mixed up and combined to make the most of all kinds of materials - even disparate ones not usually combined together, which can be overcome by using zigzag seaming and other techniques.

The Computer Shelf

Murach's C# 2015
Anne Boehm and Joel Murach
Mike Murach & Associates
4340 N. Knoll, Fresno, CA 93722
9781890774943, $57.50,

Murach's C# 2015 is a 'must' guide for any who would learn C# through a self-paced, object-oriented book that teaches the basics while applying them to common issues in business circles. While plenty of books promise to achieve the same thing, the difference here lies in pages of screen boxes, discussions of methods and approaches that result in errors or special challenges, pages of instruction on how to create classes, understand database programming basics, and how to work with different files and data streams, and more. With its combination of clear 'how to' directions for all levels of users, its ability to impart directions using step-by-step descriptions and visuals, and its connections to common business applications, it's no wonder the Murach brand name in general and this book in particular are so successful.

AutoCAD 2016 Beginning and Intermediate
M. Hamad
Mercury Learning
PO Box 605, Herndon, VA 20172-0605
9781942270461, $59.95,

AutoCAD 2016 Beginning and Intermediate offers an in-depth reference to 2-D drafting basics for the latest version of AutoCAD, and uses both metric and imperial units as it presents drawing and editing tools and their applications. An accompanying CD of exercises and projects supports over a hundred small projects that are used to help AutoCAD learners apply theory to real-world applications. If only one basic book were desired that illustrates its concepts with drawing exercises and solutions, which can carry learners from beginnings basics through intermediate steps, it should be AutoCAD 2016 Beginning and Intermediate, with its numerous charts, drawings, and illustrations.

Getting to Know ArcGIS Pro
Michael Law and Amy Collins
ESRI Press
380 New York Street, Redlands, CA 92378-8100
9781589484573, $84.99,

Getting to Know ArcGIS Pro may look like a text for those with prior knowledge of the program, but it's directed for both newcomers and those with some background, and provides a dual focus on information supplementing classroom material as well as text supporting independent studies. Chapters focus on how to visualize and work with data in either 2D or 3D environments, using the latest version of the GIS mapping program, ARcGIS Pro. Those familiar with older versions will find this offers plenty of coverage of the program's basic operations and applications, while newcomers receive data, exercises, and trial software which may be downloaded from the ESRI site. Other pluses to this coverage include large-size color screen shots and illustrations and "remind me how" sidebars of information that make it a snap to learn the basics of the GIS mapping system and its real-world applications.

The Gardening Shelf

Farrow & Ball: How to Decorate
Joa Studholme & Charlotte Cosby
Mitchell Beazley
c/o Octopus Publishing
236 Park Avenue, New York NY 10017
9781784720872, $39.99,

Farrow & Ball: How to Decorate is published to coincide with the 70th anniversary of the interior decoration company and packs in homes from around the world, photographed just for this book by James Merrell to pair with specific directions on home decor, color, design, and the effects of different kinds of paint and paper. The full-page color examples offer a wide range of styles and designs, reinforcing a theme of what works and what doesn't under different conditions. From how to create and understand the concept of 'flow' in a home's design to creating balance, this is a solid coverage of basic decoration techniques and approaches that no interior design collection should be without.

The Education Shelf

Lisa Murphy on Play
Lisa Murphy
Redleaf Press
10 Yorkton Court, St. Paul, MN 55117-1065
9781605544410, $24.95,

Lisa Murphy on Play: The Foundation of Children's Learning comes from a 'play advocate' and early childhood education expert who has a clear understanding of the importance and role of play in the early education process, and who provides a fun primer directed to adults (teachers and parents alike) who want to incorporate more learning opportunities through play experiences. Chapters reduce this concept to seven basic routines that can easily be done with children on a daily basis, teaching how to make these seven methods a part of daily activities and how to connect them to basic concepts kids will learn from. From making time to move and grow to cultivating creativity and a sense of touch, this is a solid guide any adult can easily use with all children.

MCAT Subject Review Complete Test, second edition
The Princeton Review
c/o Random House Inc.
1745 Broadway, New York NY 10019
9780451487155, $215.00,

The second updated edition of the slipcased seven-book set MCAT Subject Review Complete Test is something special, and is a top recommendation for any serious collection or individual studying for the MCAT. Its package of seven books covers all different parts of the exam, from biochemistry and math to psychology and analytical skills, and each book provides detailed coverage on each subject. There are thousands of review sections and practice tests, color illustrations throughout, and an attention to detail that includes summaries and reviews for quick consultation as well as in-depth coverage for students who would move slower, cover-to-cover, before beginning the quicker review and testing process. Detailed glossaries, a discussion of test-taking methods and successful approaches to the MCAT, and online support with practice tests designed to enhance and expand the books by providing full-length exams online leave nothing to guess and create a format that is inviting and easy to use.

Are You Smart Enough?
Alexander W. Astin
Stylus Publishing, Inc.
22883 Quicksilver Drive, Sterling, VA 20166-2012
9781620364482, $22.50,

Are You Smart Enough? How Colleges' Obsession with Smartness Shortchanges Students is a call to action by an author who asks his colleagues in higher education to focus on real student development; not assessments of intelligence and proof of its existence. Chapters consider the real process of learning with an eye to considering how learning is measured, how students are leaving college without the necessary foundations in academic growth, and how educational equality is being pre-empted by an attention to measuring achievement using the wrong focus. Any higher education leader will find this an excellent discussion offering much food for thought.

Corwin Press
2455 Teller Road, Thousand Oaks, CA 91320-2218

Maurice J. Elias, Joseph J. Ferrito and Dominic C. Moceri's The Other Side of the Report Card (9781483386676, $30.00) pairs research with guided exercises for analyzing report cards for contents and information, and shows how to use report cards to blend different systems for a better overall view of the whole child's progress. Chapters suggest new and improved designs, offer keys to using reports to better communications with parents, and offer case history examples of how these cards are implemented. The result is a powerful presentation offering new insights on report card meaning. Margo Gottlieb's Assessing English Language Learners: Bridges to Educational Equity (9781483381060, $35.00) offers a completely revised, updated edition of a classic that first appeared ten years ago, and offers more tools and ideas for handling and putting into place the concepts of instructional assessment. From cultural responses and academic language to the languages of content areas, discussions of oral language and literacy, Spanish language arts and assessment, and defining common instructional products, this is a powerful guide. Beverley Holden Johns' 15 Positive Behavior Strategies to Increase Academic Success (9781483349978, $25.00) uses some forty years of experience with challenging students as the foundation for developing a set of fifteen intervention techniques. It's more than based on experience: research and case studies support these behavioral interventions with chapters discussing student misbehaviors, common approaches and alternatives to common approaches. John F. Barell's second edition of Why Are School Buses Always Yellow? Teaching for Inquiry K-8 (9781506323657, $28.00) continues the drive to encourage kids to inquiry, updating its approach based on the latest inquiry-based teaching research and methods and adding new examples for K-8 teachers that display different applications of the inquiry process. Questions that lead to higher-level thinking and better teacher-initiated experiences make for a powerful survey that can be used in a range of diverse classroom settings. Margo Gottlieb's Assessing English Language Learners: Bridges to Educational Equity (9781483361060, $40.95) appears in its second edition to discuss academic language proficiency and the tools and approaches that can lend to better instructional assessment processes. It's designed as a compliment to focus on lesson content and emphasizes linguistics and cultural inclusion as it reviews assessment policies, discusses the role of students in self- and peer-assessment procedures, considers ELLs and language proficiency standards, and more. Trudy T. Arriaga and Randall B. Lindsey's Opening Doors: An Implementation Template for Cultural Proficiency (9781483388793, $31.95) tells of what happens when the Ventura Unified School District successfully implements a new program for cultural proficiency for students who were on the edge of failure, and it offers lessons for others who would follow its three-year implementation plan for making a school culturally proficient. Templates and forms supporting this process are available on a complimentary website, while discussions about the process of 'deconstructing' learning for a better approach and model, and understanding systemic changes makes for many revealing insights. Nancy Boyles' Lessons and Units for Closer Reading, Grades K-2: Ready-to-Go Resources and Assessment Tools Galore (9781506326467, $34.95) offers an easy-access spiral-bound format for lay-flat reading and lesson plans and represents the author's research through hundreds of standards and assessments to pinpoint the twelve key skills that are central to success in the K-2 grade levels. Here are twelve reproducible sets of Active Reader Cards, step-by-step how-to instructions for both introductory lessons and follow-up assignments, and lessons arranged into 5 units of study for an easy curriculum matching standards-based teaching. The result is a powerful survey, highly recommended for any K-2 teacher.

The Photography Shelf

Amherst Media
175 Rano Street, Suite 200, Buffalo, NY 14207-2176

Thom Rouse's After the Camera: Digital Transformations for Conceptual Nude & Portrait Photography (9781682030042, $29.95) comes from a photography artist who crafts images that are embedded with fine art, using portraits of his clients and additions from other photos to blend background and form toe crate something new. Portrait photographers who seek innovative new approaches to their subject will relish discussions which tell how to take image concepts and translate them into visual art forms. Chapters offer step-by-step color photos that shows how images are selected and combined for the final full-page color portrait result, while accompanying text covers the specifics involved in decision making and rendering. Mark Chen's Mastering Composition for Photographers: Create Images with Impact (9781608959815, $37.95) tells how to design images for striking, eye-popping results and teaches a blend of basic composition approaches with new ideas. From using repetition and negative space to understanding dominators and cropping results, this is packed with visual and verbal insights that do a terrific job of exploring how photography composition works.

The Architecture Shelf

American Architecture: A History, second edition
Leland M. Roth and Amanda C. Roth Clark
Westview Press
c/o Perseus Book Group
250 W. 57th St., Suite 1500, New York, NY 10107
9780813349688, $85.00,

American Architecture: A History appears in its second updated edition some fifteen years after its first appearance to provide a completely revised guide to the history of architecture in this country, and is a college-level read that features a chronological arrangement discussing the various artistic, social and political forces that have influenced architectural style in this country. This edition adds a new chapter on green architecture and trends in the 21st century, but it doesn't stop there: readers receive the latest research and discussions of trends in revised chapters that include coverage of changing architectural training, women in architecture, arts programs, and more. With over six hundred black and white images and sixty color photos, American Architecture: A History is one of the best introductions to the topic that a student could hope for.

The Architect in Practice, 11th edition
David Chappell and Michael Dunn
Wiley Blackwell
350 Main Street, Malden, MA 02148
9781118907733, $65.00,

The 11th updated edition of The Architect in Practice represents yet another rendition of a classic textbook on the subject, bringing the book up to date by including the new RIBA Plan of Work 2013, presenting changes to standard contract forms, and changing the book's structure so that the content more accurately follows the latest architectural practices and plans of work. From feasibility studies and technical design drawings, specs, and building regulations to contractors and construction, team management, and concept design, this covers legal, business, and artistic practices alike and is an important key to understanding the extent and best practices of the architectural firm.

The Philosophy Shelf

Husserl's Missing Technologies
Don Ihde
Fordham University Press
2546 Belmont Avenue
University Box L, Bronx, NY 10458-5172
9780823269617, $24.00,

Husserl's Missing Technologies is recommended for college-level collections strong in philosophy in general and continental philosophy in particular, and examines the works and writings of Edmund Husserl and his comments on technology and science. While the subject may seem fairly specific and narrow, Ihde's overall approach includes a history of science, philosophical development, and discussion of the evolution of two disciplines, presenting a radical argument that philosophies should be accompanied by use-lives.

The Audiobook Shelf

Private Paris
James Patterson and Mark Sullivan
Hachette Audio
237 Park Avenue, New York, NY 10017
9781476928061, $35.00,

Private Paris is narrated by Jay Snyder, Dion Graham and Jean Brassard and is presented as an unabridged thriller that begins with a bang and is hard to stop listening to. Jack Morgan, founder of a global security agency, is anticipating a leisurely stopover in Paris to visit his office; but when a call from a client asks him to track down a girl fleeing a drug dealer, his mission quickly becomes more complicated, involving the murders of elite French society members and a puzzle that evolves into an intriguing mystery. Enthusiasts of the thriller format will relish this riveting story, which comes alive in audio.

The Mystery/Suspense Shelf

Blood Orange
Susan Wittig Albert
Berkeley Prime Crime
c/o Penguin Group (USA)
375 Hudson Street, New York, NY 10014
9780425280003, $27.00,

Blood Orange returns China Bayles to new adventure as it tells of China's turbulent life as she struggles with her part ownership of a brewing company and her new tenant hospice nurse's suspicions about a possible murder victim. When her tenant is critically injured and China is her only advocate, the story really begins to heat up as China must determine who, out of a cast of possibilities, cared enough about Kelly's discoveries to want her dead. Friendship and survival skills are put to the test as China finds the disparate threads in her life becoming tangled in a dangerous truth which murder mystery readers will find a compelling adventure read.

The Fiction Shelf

The Service of the Dead
Candace Robb
Pegasus Books
80 Broad Street, 5th Floor, New York, NY 10004
9781681771274, $25.95,

The Service of the Dead is a historical novel that deftly captures politics and interactions between different social interests in late medieval Europe as it features Kate Clifford, who lives in York, England in the fourteenth century. Kate is only twenty, but she's struggling with the debt her late husband left as her legacy, and is determined to be wealthy and secure outside of another marriage - so she turns one of her properties into a guest house for eminent visitors and wealthy merchants, there to face a guest's murder and the threats of war and revolution alike. Against the backdrop of social pressures and military actions, Kate's character and world shine and draw readers into her choices and challenges.

Murder, She Wrote: Design for Murder
Jessica Fletcher, Donald Bain, Renee Paley-Bain
Obsidian Mystery
c/o Penguin Group (USA)
375 Hudson Street, New York, NY 10014
9780451477811, $25.00,

Murder, She Wrote: Design for Murder is based on the Universal television series and adds yet another book to a best-selling, rapidly-expanding series. This time Jessica's in Manhattan attending a new designer's debut when a young model collapses and dies on the runway. Seems like natural causes, but when another is found dead, it seems like more than coincidence. As Jessica investigates the models' demise, she comes to find an insidious plot is involved that's far more complex than anyone could have predicted. Another outstanding mystery in this winning series!

Simon & Schuster
1230 Avenue of the Americas, 14th fl., New York, NY 10020

Chris Cleave's Everyone Brave is Forgiven (9781501124372, $26.99) is set in 1939 in London, where war has been declared and Mary is one of the first to sign up to help, certain she will make a great spy. Instead, she's assigned the role of a teacher - and finds her skills put to the test when her students aren't what she expected. Alastair also has enlisted, to find his perceptions of the war effort aren't exactly what he'd envisioned, either. When the two meet, love erupts - but war's shadowing everything in their worlds and survival is anything but certain. Readers seeking a romance forged on the battlefields of change will relish the vivid characters and scenes of Everyone Brave is Forgiven. Chitra Banerjee Divakaruni's Before We Visit the Goddess (9781476792002, $25.00) tells of Sabitri, the daughter of a poor sweet-maker in rural Bengal who wants an education. Her family's poverty seems to doom her to something far less desirable, until an influential woman temporarily takes an interest in her, then drops her. Years later Sabitri's daughter flees to America with her lover to make different choices based on freedom - only to find that this, too, is an illusion. As different generations struggle with breaking free of their heritages, Before We Visit the Goddess follows their processes, from their dreams and realities to how these dreams are changed and challenged by class, circumstances, and sometimes poor choices. A vivid novel of three generations of Indian women creates a compelling story that's hard to put down.

The Cookbook Shelf

The Total Grilling Manual
Lisa Atwood, Editor
Weldon Owen
415 Jackson Street, San Francisco, CA 94111
9781681880471, $29.00,

The Total Grilling Manual: 264 Essentials for Cooking with Fire provides a fine collection of skills and recipes which give novices everything they need to know to successfully grill or smoke all kinds of meats. From different charcoals and woods to different cooking methods for gas to campfire, chapters cover all kinds of techniques for field or home, gather hints from grillers around the world, and wrap these suggestions into recipes that are packed with color photos and sidebars of information on every page. With little left to wonder and the collected expertise of a range of approaches and grillers, The Total Grilling Manual is recommended for any who want only one grilling cookbook on hand.

Cooking, Blokes & Artichokes
Brendan Collins
192 - 198 Vauxhall Bridge Road, London, England, SW1V 1DX
National Book Network (distributor)
4501 Forbes Boulevard, Suite 200, Lanham, MD 20706
9781909487338, $29.95,

Cooking, Blokes & Artichokes: A Modern Man's Kitchen Handbook is directed to men seeking a basic guide to good cooking and pairs stories and recipes in the process of discussing how to produce food from scratch with foolproof results. From a basic introduction on kitchen tools and how to use them to a recipe collection designed to impress yet which excels in simplicity, Cooking, Blokes & Artichokes includes such dishes as Roasted Duck Breast with Figs and Farro, Pigs in Blankets, Octopus Salad, and more. User-friendly introductions to each dish makes for a cookbook which will appeal to men who look for cookbooks that presume no prior knowledge but don't 'dumb down' their ingredients or their advice for novices. The result is an excellent blend of innovative and fancy-sounding fare that men will relish.

Basque: Spanish Recipes from San Sebastian & Beyond
Jose Pizarro
Hardie Grant
c/o Rizzoli
300 Park Avenue South, 3rd floor, New York, NY 10010
9781784880262, $39.95,

Basque: Spanish Recipes from San Sebastian & Beyond presents recipes from a London restaurateur who worked in some of the city's finest Spanish restaurants, and provides home cooks with dishes that make the most of the Basque recipe tradition. From Bonito Belly with Garlic or Chestnut Flan to Baked Crab and Cherry and Almond Soup, the collection pairs color photos of finished dishes with shots of the Basque people and countryside, and introduces each recipe with insights on Basque culture and culinary traditions. The result is a fine cookbook, highly recommended for any who would focus on the varied delights of Spanish Basque cuisine.

William & Suzue Curley
Jacqui Small / Aurum Press
c/o Quarto Publishing Group USA
400 First Avenue North, Suite 400, Minneapolis, MN 55401-1722
9781909342217, $60.00,

Patisserie is one of those rare dessert cookbooks to offer something truly innovative and appealing, and will win attention from any who have seen one too many cookbooks with a similar title covering the same things. William Curley's dedication is for taking these classic dishes and adding modern embellishments you won't find elsewhere: thus such productions as Chocolate and Cherry Linzer Tarts departs from the usual Austrian filling of raspberries or red currants, while Passion Fruit & Pink Grapefruit Tart represents a departure from the usual focus on lemons. The result is an appealing and mouth-watering gathering of innovations recommended not so much for novice dessert cooks as for those who have the basics down and are seeking a collection of innovations.

Country Cooking from a Redneck Kitchen
Francine Bryson with Ann Volkwein
Clarkson Potter Publishers
c/o The Random House Publishing Group
1745 Broadway, 17th floor, New York, NY 10019
9780553448450, $22.00,

Country Cooking from a Redneck Kitchen is an unusual production that comes from a national pie champion who here focuses on Southern fare: dishes that she and her fellow Southerners go to when company comes. These range from Southern Fried Catfish and Corn Pudding to Creamed Corn, Bourbon and Coke Wings, and Bacon BBQed Baked Beans, with each dish offering a blend of simplicity and hearty Southern home cooking. Simple, direct and appealing, Country Cooking from a Redneck Kitchen celebrates the taste of country.

Leinana Two Moons
Vegan Heritage Press
P.O. Box 628, Woodstock, VA 22664-0628
9781941252246, $21.95,

Baconish offers something different in a vegan cookbook that focuses on bacon flavor and plant-based ingredients, and will appeal to any who miss some of the flavor but don't want to compromise their health vegan focus. A blend of spices, textured vegetable protein, and flavors that help vegan dishes 'pop' with color and flavor lend to such dishes as Bacon-Apple Fritters (made with Tempah Bacon), Pasta with Zucchini, Corn and Vegan Bacon, and a Mexican-style chorizo made with TVP crumbles that can be used in Mexican dishes or for sloppy Joes. The result is a delicious compilation of dishes packed with flavor that stay true to vegan lifestyles.

The Literary Studies Shelf

Farnsworth's Classical English Metaphor
Ward Farnsworth
David R. Godine, Publisher
Fifteen Court Square, Suite 320, Boston, MA 02108-2536
9781567925467, $27.95,

Farnsworth's Classical English Metaphor comes from a dean at the Texas University School of Law, and examines how metaphor is used to simplify and clarify language and daily speech. Numerous examples of metaphor are organized under general topics that range from using nature to describe inner states to applications in institutions and organizations, differing circumstances, and adding in similes. Under a different hand it would be difficult to retain the balance of scholarship and lively, contemporary applications of classic English; but the pleasure in Farnsworth's Classical English Metaphor lies in its delicate tightrope walk which succeeds in making the discussions and historical references accessible to English majors and general interest literature readers alike.

The Mathematics Shelf

Foundations of Mathematics
Philip Brown
Mercury Learning
PO Box 605, Herndon, VA 20172-0605
9781942270751, $49.95,

Foundations of Mathematics: Algebra, Geometry, Trigonometry, Calculus joins others in the "Essentials of Mathematics" series and provides basic demonstrations, instructions, and resources for mastering these basics or refreshing one's knowledge of the topics. College-level mathematics students will find it a basic pre-calculus primer that pairs definitions and explanations with plenty of examples, illustrations, formulas, and keys to problem-solving. Equations and definitions are explored in a foundational text that is highly recommended as a basic reference for any student of pre-calculus or who seeks a refresher course.

The Gun Shelf

Blue Book of Gun Values, 37th edition
S.P. Fjestad
Blue Book Publications
8009 34th Avenue South, Suite 250, Minneapolis, MN 55425
9781936120758, $54.95,

The 37th edition of a fine reference packs in over two thousand pages of the latest information and values for both antique and modern firearms, offering a detailed reference to nearly two thousand manufacturers and almost twenty-three thousand models. The alphabetical arrangement of this book makes it easy to use as an at-a-glance reference, while the color photo percentage grading system has been substantially revised and serialization charts have been expanded to include more manufacturing years. The result is a reference that no gun collector should be without.

The Crafts Shelf

Birds from Bricks
Thomas Poulsom
Quarry Books
c/o Quarto Publishing Group USA
400 First Avenue North, Suite 400, Minneapolis, MN 55401-1722
9781631590795, $24.99,

Birds from Bricks: Amazing Lego designs That Take Flight is for any Lego builder and fan who wants to produce something other than structures using Lego materials. The focus here is on birds, and the projects are bird-specific, so penguins, cardinals, Northern lapwings, and more are included. Expect a blend of basic bird facts, full-page color images of the bird in Lego materials, and a sidebar color parts key that accompanies step-by-step written instructions and color photos.

Reverie: A Coloring Retreat
Mysha Denson
Cedar Fort Inc.
2373 West 700 South, Springville, Utah 84663
9781462118397, $12.99,

Reverie: A Coloring Retreat joins others on the bandwagon of adult coloring books in offering Church-themed illustrations from Biblical references. Christian colorers receive the garden of Eden, LDS symbols and sayings, Christmas images, and more in a coloring book of black and white images just ready to fill in and use. Many coloring books are available for whimsical and fantasy themes: the appearance of a religious-themed book will attract those who want to contemplate as they color.

The Sports Shelf

Building Muscle and Performance
Nick Tumminello
Human Kinetics Publishers, Inc.
PO Box 5076, Champaign, IL 61820-5076
9781492512707, $23.95,

Building Muscle and Performance: A Program for Size, Strength, & Speed combines different exercises and approaches to strength building under one cover, and comes from a trainer whose experience has succeeded in producing a workout designed for high-octane muscle-building results. Under his hand, there are no limitations on the kind of sports goal involved, and no prior familiarity required with sports routines or training programs. Nearly three hundred exercises and over seventy programs are accompanied by step-by-step black and white photo sequences that leave nothing to guess, while equipment tips, safety, and variation options provide maximum flexibility and information. The result is a powerful survey, highly recommended for any who would adopt a program applicable to a range of exercise goals.

Fantasy/SciFi Shelf

Freak Show of the Gods
Robert W. Bly
Quill Driver Books
2006 South Mary, Fresno, CA 93721
9781610352635, $16.95,

Freak Show of the Gods is a short story collection especially recommended for Twilight Zone enthusiasts, and offers a range of stories that adopt satisfyingly diverse approaches, from the urban fantasy of a vampire hunter's final battlefield as he faces the ravages of profiting from his trade to what happens when a professional superhero can't get social security in his old age. Delightful in tone and scope, Freak Show of the Gods excels in a sense of the odd, the unexpected, presenting a series of tantalizingly diverse scenarios.

The Road to Hell
David Weber
Baen Books
PO Box 1188, Wake Forest NC 27588
9781476780672, $28.00,

The Road to Hell follows the war between magic and special abilities as it tells of a dragon assault across five universes, sacrifices in a royal house caught in the middle of war, and the lasting impact of these events on individuals set to inherit war and peace. Andrin can catch glimpses of the future, and she knows it involves more sacrifices if peace is ever to be attained; but both sides face nearly insurmountable obstacles in the efforts to arrive at a better world. Fans of military sci-fi and those involving powerful heritages will find The Road to Hell an absorbing, compelling production.

The Metaphysical Studies Shelf

Angel Prayers
Joanne Brocas
New Page Books
c/o Career Press Inc.
12 Parish Drive, Wayne, NJ 07470
9781632650399, $15.99,

Angel Prayers: Communing with Angels to Help Restore Health, Love, Prosperity, Joy, and Enlightenment comes from an angel expert and teacher who here gathers divine angel prayers and inspirational messages, and who helps readers understand how prayers result in harmonic resonance and newfound connections with God. From amplifying love to receiving divine guidance and understanding the power and approach of prayer, Joanne Brocas creates an A-Z guide to enlightenment perfect for new age and Christian readers alike.

The Universe Loves a Happy Ending
Hans Andeweg
Hunter House
c/o Turner Publishing Company
200 - 4th Avenue North, Suite 950, Nashville, TN 37219
9781681626505, $39.95,

The Universe Loves a Happy Ending: Becoming Energy Healers for the Planet, Organizations and Ourselves will appeal to new age and spirituality readers that blends the author's own experiences of self-discovery with discussions of the science of quantum mechanics, near-death experiences, and the impact of energetic healing processes. Expect a more scientific perspective than the typical new age book presents, with a survey of energy's qualities and connections and what it translates to in the spiritual realm. New connections between quantum science and spiritual tools and insights are revealed in a book which offers ten Principles of Energetic Guardianship and applies them to guiding life and ecosystems alike. Also expect a number of color illustrations and a surprisingly user-friendly format and approach for a subject which initially sounds like a scientifically complex for non-scientist readers. This audience will be delighted to find all the basic ideas are very easy to access and the unusual connections are stimulating and thought-provoking.

The California Shelf

American Arcadia: California and the Classical Tradition
Peter J. Holliday
Oxford University Press
198 Madison Avenue, New York, NY 10016-4314
9780190256517, $45.00,

American Arcadia: California and the Classical Tradition offers college-level readers a lively and different kind of historical approach to California, surveying how the state was touted as a new opportunity for cultural change that embedded some of the classical traditions of ancient Greek and Roman cultures. The approach comes from an art historian who uses not just discussions of architectural, artistic, and interior design models but surveys of landscapers, developers, and early visions of how the California landscape could be re-formed and honed to incorporate classical style and ideas. Discussions of the evolution of healthy eating concepts, architectural and landscape designs with classical roots, the evolution and interconnected interests of idealists and wealthy patrons, and economic forces provides a synthesis of approaches and insights perfect for any who would study California's growth and history from a more artistic and social integrative approach than is usually presented. Very highly recommended!

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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