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Library Bookwatch

Volume 4, Number 12 December 2009 Home | LBW Index

Table of Contents

Reviewer's Choice Library Science Shelf Writing/Publishing Shelf
Cookbook Shelf Woodworking Shelf Egyptology Shelf
American History Shelf Audiobook Shelf Library DVD Shelf
Biography Shelf Theatre/Cinema/TV Shelf Literary Shelf
Military Shelf Hunting/Fishing Shelf Civil War Shelf
Buddhist Studies Shelf Environmental Studies Shelf Language Studies Shelf
Antiques/Collectibles Shelf Railroading Shelf Photography Shelf
Humor Shelf Sports Shelf Home Improvement Shelf
Needlecraft Shelf Computer Shelf Architecture Shelf
Women's Studies Shelf Fiction Shelf Poetry Shelf
Social Issues Shelf International Studies Shelf Art Shelf
Christian Studies Shelf Religion/Spirituality Shelf Judaic Studies Shelf
World History Shelf Self-Help Shelf Education Shelf
Business Shelf Money/Finance Shelf Health/Medicine Shelf
Metaphysical Studies Shelf Pets/Wildlife Shelf Philosophy Shelf
Psychology Shelf Christmas Shelf  

Reviewer's Choice

Irish Folk and Fairy Tales
Gordon Jarvie
Black Staff Press
c/o DuFour Editions
PO Box 7, Chester Springs, PA 19425
9780856408366, $15.95,

Every country has its own literature and mythology. "Irish Folk and Fairy Tales" is a collection of short stories focusing on traditional Irish mythos. These contemporary writers provide excellent stories in the style of folk tales, with a touch of modernism where needed. "Irish Folk and Fairy Tales" is a top pick.

The Library Science Shelf

Moving Your Library
Steven Carl Fortriede
American Library Association
50 East Huron Street, Chicago, IL 60611
9780838909942, $63.00,

Moving hundreds of books is no simple task. "Moving Your Library: Getting the Collection from Here to There" is a guide for moving one's base of operations to a new location. The advice given within gives specifications for what types of boxes one should try to use, packing one's inventory, and transporting it. "Moving Your Library" also discusses the problems one may face in a new location such as new employees and how to teach them to deal with the move. For any librarian who may be facing a location change in the future, "Moving Your Library" should prove a solid investment.

Scared Silly
Dianne de Las Casas
Libraries Unlimited
PO Box 1911, Santa Barbara, CA 93116-1911
9781591587323, $30.00,

For Halloween or story-time for any other time of the year, "Scared Silly: 25 Tales to Tickle and Thrill" by author and award-winning storyteller Dianne de Las Casas is an instructive guide and manual of the methods and techniques for telling a scary story in ways that will involve the audience to attend attentively and participate appropriately. Through the illustrative example of twenty-five stories, "Scared Silly" will enable children's librarians, elementary school teachers, camp counselors, and home-schooling parents to entertain their young listeners. Of special note is the 'Spook-O-Meter' rating for each individual story so that age appropriateness (grades 1 through 5) can be easily determined. "Scared Silly: 25 Tales to Tickle and Thrill" is a welcome and highly recommended addition to academic library and community library staff resource collections.

Library Mashups
Nicole C. Engard
Information Today
143 Old Marlton Pike, Medford, NJ 08055
9781573873727, $39.50,

Libraries are compendiums of data, but what point is there to the data if it's not presented in a good way? "Library Mashups: Exploring New Ways to Deliver Library Data" is a guide for librarians on how to use the internet and all of the applications that have spawned out of it to improve their library as it serves for a vault of information. Featuring contributions from countless professional librarians, "Library Mashups" is a collection that should not be ignored.

Starting, Strengthening, and Managing Institutional Repositories
Jonathan A. Nabe
Neal-Schuman Publishers
100 William Street, Suite 2004, New York, NY 10038
9781555706890, $85.00,

Record keeping is not something to skimp on. "Starting, Strengthening, and Managing Institutional Repositories" is a scholarly reference for major institutions that require tip top record keeping in order to function at their full capacity. With chapters advocating using librarians as managers of the repositories, policies, encouraging use, and using them to come up with new ideas, author Jonathan A. Nale presents a complete and comprehensive coverage of the concept. "Starting, Strengthening, and Managing Institutional Repositories" is a very strongly recommended addition to community and college library science collections.

The Writing/Publishing Shelf

Writing For The Internet
Craig Baehr & Bob Schaller
Greenwood Press
PO Box 1911, Santa Barbara, CA 93116-1911
9780313376948, $55.00,

From the earliest era of writing when the technology was making stylistic marks upon wet clay shards, through the invention of papyri scrolls and quill pens, to typewriters, to computer keyboards, to held-hand blackberries and the most recent mechanical advance in writing -- twittering, technology has impacted in how we communicate through the written word. That evolution, interestingly enough, has gone from the simple to the complex and now back to simple. Each technological development had its own demands imposed upon those who would write -- and the Internet is no exception. That's why "Writing for the Internet: A Guide to Real Communication in Virtual Space", the collaborative work of Craig Baehr and Bob Schaller, is so timely and highly recommended. Spanning a wide range of relevant issues, this thoroughly 'user friendly' introduction and instruction guide ranges from online publishing to blogging and everything in-between. Identifying and addressing the factors that make for good, effective, professional quality writing in a cyberspace medium, "Writing for the Internet" is an ideal classroom textbook, self-instruction manual, and a solid reference work for personal, academic, and community library Writing/Publishing reference collections and supplemental reading lists.

Mentors, Muses, & Monsters
Elizabeth Benedict
Free Press
c/o Simon & Schuster
1230 Avenue of the Americas, New York, NY 10020
9781439108611, $24.99,

There are central figures in everyone's lives who are the cornerstones of who they have become. "Mentors, Muses, & Monsters: 30 Writers on the People Who Changed Their Lives' is a collection of essays from many writers as they reflect on these individuals who have changed the course of their lives. Thirty different perspectives offer very different stories and shows the impact of positive and negative influences can drastically have. "Mentors, Muses, & Monsters" is an intriguing and top pick for those who want to understand inspiration and the people who provide it.

Writing Content
Roger W. Nielsen
R. W. Nielsen Company
1974 Alan Street, Idaho Falls, ID, 83404
9780982035542, $19.95,

Specially written as a do-it-yourself instruction manual for aspiring writers seeking to create articles and stories for magazine publication, and for anyone wanting to write persuasively and credibly in an online forum or format, Roger W. Nielsen has compiled a thoroughly 'user friendly' series of chapters identifying and teaching the techniques required for writing clear, concise, commercially viable, and reader engaging content. From coming up with an idea, to information gathering, to organizing the material, to the final step of writing it all down, "Writing Content" will prove to be an invaluable informational resource for the novice, and have a great deal of practical value for even the experienced author as a continuing reference and guide. Of special note and value are the chapters dedicated to writing queries, the use of anecdotes, and writer etiquette. Enhanced with a list of 'Works Cited' and a comprehensive index, "Writing Content" is a very highly recommended addition to personal, professional, and community library Writing/Publishing reference collections and supplemental reading lists.

The Complete Idiot's Guide to Writing Business Books
Bert Holtje
c/o Penguin Publishing Group
375 Hudson Street, New York, NY 10014-3658
9781592578795 $18.95 1-800-847-5515

Despite their titles, "The Complete Idiot's Guide" series of how-to books are most assuredly not for 'idiots' - they are for absolutely everyone in search of solid information on a subject. The Complete Idiot's Guide to Writing Business Books continues this worthy tradition with a no-nonsense primer on writing and profitably publishing a compendium of one's business wisdom. From testing whether there's a market for one's book, to tips on whether one should collaborate (and if so, how to find the right person to do it with), to advice for publicizing oneself and one's book, and more, The Complete Idiot's Guide to Writing Business Books walks the reader through every step of the process. An extremely user-friendly resource, highly recommended.

The Fire in Fiction
Donald Maass
Writer's Digest Books
c/o F+W Media, Inc.
4700 East Galbraith Road, Cincinnati, Ohio 45236
9781582975061 $17.99

Literary agent and author Donald Maass presents The Fire in Fiction: Passion, Purpose, and Techniques to Make Your Novel Great, a solid guide to enlivening one's writing. Especially promoting the power of tapping into one's own, most unforgettable life experiences, The Fire in Fiction is reader-friendly and covers everything from crafting characters with hopes and dreams that resonate with the reader, to the secrets of successful satire, to heightening tension in dialogue, action, or even exposition, and much more. A "must-have" resource for fiction writers of all skill and experience levels.

Questions Writers Ask
Karen Speerstra
Robert D. Reed Publishers
PO Box 1992, 1380 Face Rock Drive, Bandon, OR 97411
9781934759325 $16.95

Questions Writers Ask: Wise, Whimsical, and Witty Answers from the Pros presents published professionals' answers to common questions about writing. Organized around twenty different topics (each topic is in the form of a question such as "Where do you get your ideas?", followed by a wealth of different answers to that one question by a diversity of people), Questions Writers Ask is a solid and useful primer, and deserves to be read cover to cover by anyone interested in breaking into the writing business. Nearly 6,000 quotations, many of them classic, pack this excellent resource. "Plot springs from character... I've always sort of believed that these people inside me - these characters - know who they are and what they're about and what happens, and they need me to help get it down on paper because they can't type." -Anne Lamott.

The Cookbook Shelf

The Cake Mix Doctor Returns!
Anne Byrn
Workman Publishing Company
225 Varick Street, New York, NY 10014-4381 1-800-722-7202
9780761129615 $15.95,

The Cake Mix Doctor Returns is a compendium of over 160 mouth-watering recipes that turn ordinary cake mixes into extraordinarily scrumptious desserts. Author Ann Byrn has appeared on dozens of television and radio shows such as "Good Morning America" and "All Things Considered" to share her delicacies; now she brings the straight scoop on everything from layer cakes to bundt and pound cakes to sheet cakes, cupcakes, brownies, bars, cookies and more. Many recipies include a space on the left of the page especially for inventive chefs to jot down notes! An absolute "must" for the cookbook collection of any cake lover, highly recommended.

The Cocktail Primer
Eben Klemm
Andrews & McMeel
4520 Main Street, Kansas City, MO 64111 1-800-851-8923
9780740778162 $19.99.

Master mixologist Eben Klemm presents The Cocktail Primer, a step-by-step guide to creating not only classic cocktail favorites, but also modern variations - and understanding the basic principles of mixology to help one design a drink to fit any occasion. Full-color photographs illustrate this excellent, easy-to-follow guide to anyone eager to learn how to mix and serve drinks to suit any taste. Highly recommended.

Strictly Sundays
Joe Fitzpatrick, author
Steven Potter, photographer
Book Publishers Network
PO Box 2256, Bothell, WA 98041 (publicity)
9781935359197 $19.95,

Strictly Sundays is not a sundae cookbook - rather, it is packed cover to cover with mouth-watering creations especially meant to be cooked and served on Sundays. Written by Joe Fitzpatrick, a.k.a. "The Blue Collar Gourmet", Strictly Sundays includes appetizers such as "Spicy Shrimp" and "Monica's Guacamole", main dishes such as "John's Stuffed Flank Steak" and "Lady Vi's Lasagna", salads such as "Caesar Coleslaw" and "Quinoa Salad", soups such as "Roasted Jalapeno Soup" and "Joe's Clam Chowder", and much more. Easy-to-follow instructions and luscious color photographs distinguish this compendium of palate-pleasing meals sure to make any cook a hit on Sundays!

Menus and Memories from Punjab
Veronica "Rani" Sidhu
Hippocrene Books, Inc.
171 Madison Avenue, New York, NY 10016
9780781812207 $29.95

Written by a Punjabi cooking teacher with thirty years' experience in her family's Punjabi kitchens, Menus and Memories from Punjab: Meals to Nourish Body and Soul lives up to its title with a wide collection of traditional Punjabi dishes, each with extensive preparation instructions, a black-and-white photograph, and a brief paragraph commenting on the author's memories of the meal. Menus and Memories from Punjab blends culinary creations with love of family cooking, and the pages about preparing meals for special days are sure to warm the reader's heart while inspiring them to make the most of special occasions. A welcome and highly recommended addition to international cookbook shelves.

100 Words for Foodies
American Heritage Dictionaries
Houghton Mifflin Company
215 Park Avenue South, NY, NY 10003
9780547239682 $5.95,

100 Words for Foodies is not a typical recipe compendium (though it does include a handful of recipes such as "Turkish White Bean Wrap Sandwiches" and "Edamame and Spinach with Golden Onions") - instead, it defines one hundred terms that any aspiring chef or gourmet should know, from "bruschettta" (bread served in slices that have been broiled, rubbed with garlic, brushed with olive oil, seasoned with salt, and layered with various toppings) to "umami" (a taste sensation produced by glutamates and nucleotides, associated with meats and high-protein foods and often considered to be the fifth basic taste along with sweet, sour, salty, and bitter). Some of the words even have extensive "word history" sections describing their origin. An excellent, inexpensive supplementary resource for anyone looking to broaden their vocabulary and culinary knowledge!

The Everything Potluck Cookbook
Linda Larsen
Adams Media Corporation
57 Littlefield St., 2nd fl, Avon, MA 02322 1-800-872-5627
9781598699906 $15.95,

The Everything Potluck Cookbook lives up to its title with step-by-step instructions for easy-to-prepare potluck dishes ideal for all types of gatherings. Over 300 recipes are featured, rom "Flaky Pate Rolls" to "Scalloped Chicken", "Succotash Chowder", "Pesto Pasta Skillet", "French Lace Cookies", and more. Of especial interest in today's calorie-saturated culinary landscape are the healthy and vegetarian recipes! An inexpensive, easy-to-use resource perfect for chefs of all skill and experience levels.

Brother Anselm's Glenstal Cookbook
The Columba Press
c/o Dufour Editions, Inc.
PO Box 7, Chester Springs, PA 19425-0007
9781856076685 $22.95

Spiral-bound to lay flat (or fold its front cover all the way around) for easy reference, Brother Anselm's Glenstal Cookbook is a compendium of sixty-five recipes created and served at the Glenstal Abbey, home to approximately forty monks. From soups to fish, main courses, curries, pasta, eggs, potatoes, vegetables, desserts and more, Brother Anselm's Glenstal Cookbook blends its time-tested culinary creations with brief vignettes and a dash of humor. Featuring easy-to-follow instructions and brimming with old-world flavor cover to cover, Brother Anselm's Glenstal Cookbook is highly recommended.

Arabian Delights
Amy Riolo
Capital Books, Inc.
22841 Quicksilver Drive, Sterling, VA 20166
9781933102559 $20.00

Arabian Delights: Recipes & Princely Entertaining Ideas from the Arabian Peninsula lives up to its title with an exotic medley of healthy and popular favorites from Bahrain, Qatar, Kuwait, Oman, United Arab Emirates, Yemen, and Saudi Arabia. Recipes are organized into three major categories: "Palatial Feasts," "Special Ceremonies", and "Simpler Delights". Many are clarified with information about the ceremonies and occasions with which the dish is associated, guidelines for advance preparation, even true-life vignettes about travels and individuals of the Arab world. An enthusiastically recommended addition to international cookbook shelves.

Cake Keeper Cakes
Lauren Chattman
The Taunton Press
63 South Main Street, Newtown, CT 06470
9781600851209 $17.95 1-800-477-8727

Full-color photography of mouth-watering cake creations intersperse the pages of Cake Keeper Cakes, a collection of 100 easy-to-follow recipes of culinary delights ranging from "Chocolate Malted Snacking Cake" to "Poppy Seed Cake" to "Zebra Cake", "Cream Cake", "Nutella Swirl Pound Cake", and many more. A cake-lover's dream, Cake Keeper Cakes is an enthusiastically recommended addition to any dessert cookbook shelf!

The Woodworking Shelf

Carving Gunstocks: Power Techniques
Jose Valencia
Schiffer Publishing Ltd.
4880 Lower Valley Road, Atglen, PA 19310
9780764333705 $16.99

Expert woodworker Jose Valencia presents Carving Gunstocks: Power Techniques, a step-by-step guide to creating unique carvings on rifle and shotgun stocks, illustrated with 250 color photos. From creating original patterns, to removing factory checkering, to mastering professional-quality finishing techniques, Carving Gunstocks: Power Techniques is a superb, step-by-step guide ideal for intermediate to advanced woodworkers. A clearly written, highly accessible guide, enthusiastically recommended to hobbyist interested in refining their skill.

The Egyptology Shelf

The Realm of the Pharaohs
Zahi A. Hawass, et al.
c/o International Publishers Marketing
22841 Quicksilver Drive, Dulles, VA 20166
9789774378423 $34.50,

The Realm of the Pharaohs: Essays in Honor of Tohfa Handoussa, Volume 1 is an anthology of scholarly essays selected and compiled by Zahi A. Hawass, Khaled A. Daoud, and Sawsan Abd El-Fattah about Egypt's archaeological history and unearthed artifacts, written in honor of award-winning Egyptologist Tohfa Handoussa. Black-and-white photography and diagrams illustrate this in-depth dissection of archaeological finds, and what the latest discoveries have to contribute to modern theories about ancient Egyptian society. The result is an excellent, extraordinary resource and a welcome addition to college library Egyptology shelves, and a superb compendium of source material for anyone with a serious interest in Egypt's ancient history.

The American History Shelf

Custer Survivor
John Koster
Chronology Books
c/o History Publishing Company Inc.
PO Box 700, Palisades, New York 10964-0700
9781933909035 $16.95

Custer Survivor: The End of a Myth, the Beginning of a Legend dares to challenge the long-standing historical assumption that the 210 troopers under Custer's command were exterminated to the last man. Drawing up extensive research and forensic evidence, Custer Survivor reveals the untold tail of one trooper who escaped, the Second Sergeant of C Company. Following his ordeal after his escape and the successful life he pursued thereafter, Custer Survivor is a thought-provoking addition to American history shelves with a focus on intense historical scrutiny and re-examination.

Boy Scouts of America
Chuck Wills
DK Publishing, Inc.
375 Hudson Street, New York, NY 10014
9780756656348 $35.00

A coffee-table compilation featuring over 300 full color photographs of people, places, and memorabilia items, Boy Scouts of America: A Centennial History lives up to its title with an in-depth chronology of one of America's oldest institutions designed to prepare young men for leadership. From the Boy Scouts' origin at the turn of the century, to its evolution throughout the decades, to scouting in the modern day, Boy Scouts of America is a detailed tour de force. An excellent reference for anyone studying the Boy Scouts, and a treasure trove of nostalgia for anyone with fond memories of scouting, Boy Scouts of America is enthusiastically recommended for public, college, and personal library collections.

An American Hometown
Tom Roznowski
Quarry Books
c/o Indiana University Press
601 North Morton Street, Bloomington, IN 47404-3797 1-800-842-6796
9780253221292 $24.95,

An American Hometown: Terre Haute, Indiana 1927 offers an amazing snapshot of an ordinary American town shortly before the onset of the Great Depression. Presented in a "city directory" style, listing the names of famous people, places, and institutions followed by brief (ranging in length from a paragraph to a couple pages), descriptive biographical or historical text entries. Vintage black-and-white photographs pepper this cross-section of Americana, revealing the ins and outs of ordinary people's lives almost a century past. Highly recommended.

The Forgotten Founders on Religion and Public Life
Daniel L. Dreisbach, Mark David Hall, and Jeffry H. Morrison, editors
University of Notre Dame Press
310 Flanner Hall, Notre Dame, IN 46556
9780268026028 $28.00 1-800-621-2736

The Forgotten Founders on Religion and Public Life is an anthology of writings by learned authors seeking to bring full insight into the views of religion and the public space among a diversity of America's founders - not just the few that popular culture tends to focus on (due to a paucity of historical records or even the founder's individual efforts of self-promotion). Individual writings include "The Way of Duty: Abigail Adams and Religion", "John Jay and the 'Great Plan of Providence'", "Benjamin Rush and Revolutionary Christian Reform", "Mercy Otis Warren on Church and State", and many more. A surprisingly cosmopolitan meshing of differing views (including contrasting opinions on just how much of a role religion should have in the public domain) evolves, in this excellent effort to assemble a depth and breadth of thought to reveal precisely how America's founders viewed the church and the state. Highly recommended, especially for public and college library American History shelves.

Barbed Wire
Joanne S. Liu
Mountain Press Publishing Company
PO Box 2399, Missoula, MT 59806
9780878425570 $14.00 1-800-234-5308

A handful of vintage black-and-white photographs and illustrations enhance Barbed Wire: The Fence That Changed the West, the remarkable true history of how the invention of the barbed wire fence transformed America. Prior to the availability of affordable fencing, the Law of the Open Range decreed that the needs of cattle herds dominated the needs of farmers. With barbed wire fences, homesteaders could claim their land and create a relatively impassible barrier to cattle. The result was a conflict of cultures as cattlemen, farmers, Indians, inventors, and outlaws squared off against one another to determine what the West would become. An absorbing and insightful chronicle, enthusiastically recommended especially for American and Western history collections. Writers (and fans) of western-themed novels or shows would also be well advised to enrich themselves by reading Barbed Wire from cover to cover!

Dreams, Myths, & Reality
William Thomas Allison and Susan J. Matt, editors
Signature Books
564 West 400 North, Salt Lake City, UT 84116-3411
9781560851745 $29.95 1-800-356-5687

Dreams, Myths, & Reality: Utah and the American West is an anthology of scholarly essays by learned historians contemplating Utah's role amidst broader settlement patterns in the 1800's. Individual topics include "Contested Ground: David Hyrum Smith's Mission to Utah, 1869", "In Their Own Tongue: Utah's Nordic-Language Press as an Aspect and Instrument of Immigrant Culture", "Native Women on the Utah Frontier", the titular "Dreams, Myths, and Reality: A Centennial Perspective on Utah's Constitution", and much more. Each essay was originally presented as a part of a lecture series in Weber State University on Utah and Western history; combined, they provide an invaluable and seminal contribution to American history shelves. Highly recommended, especially for college libraries.

Lincoln and the Politics of Christian Love
Grant N. Havers
University of Missouri Press
2910 LeMone Boulevard, Columbia, MO 65201 1-800-828-1894
9780826218575 $44.95,

Lincoln and the Politics of Christian Love is a remarkable re-examination of the role of Christian faith, love, and charity in the politics of Lincoln's era. Lincoln himself considered the Christian ideal of "loving thy neighbor as oneself" an indictment of slavery; author Grant N. Havers further explains how an effective democracy can only thrive when it is charitable toward all, and only those who embrace such an ideal of universal love and charity, as propagated by the moral standard of Christian love, can be successful in implementing and building democracy. Since World War I, political and philosophical thinkers have postulated that democracy is sufficiently ethical as a strictly secular institution, without the cornerstone of Christian love; Havers persuasively argues against this widespread belief and notes that it would have been alien to many of America's founders and to Lincoln. A solid re-examination of the philosophical, historical, and practical role of Christian charity in Lincoln's legacy, Lincoln and the Politics of Christian Love is a thought-provoking read and worth extended study (especially given America's current struggles to bring democracy to non-Christian peoples and nations) regardless of whether one agrees with the author's premises.

The Audiobook Shelf

Cowboys Full: The Story of Poker
James McManus, author
Oliver Wyman, narrator
Macmillan Audio
175 Fifth Avenue, Suite 315, New York, NY 10010
9781427207999 $29.99

Written by expert journalist James McManus (who has covered poker for "The New York Times", "Los Angeles Times", and more), Cowboys Full: The Story of Poker is an abridged audiobook adaptation of the amazing true history of America's favorite card game (the abridgement was approved by the author). Chronicling how early Americans added their own twist to a French parlor game, and how game skyrocketed in popularity after the Civil War, Cowboys Full traces the influence of poker from household kitchen tables to its influence on generals, diplomats, and world leaders. Poker has much to teach us about tactics, from cheating (or stopping cheaters!) to calculating uncertainty to bluffing and calling bluffs. An extraordinary tour of one of America's most beloved pastimes, Cowboys Full: The Story of Poker is a superb gift for the poker player in one's life. 6 CDs, 7 hours.

The John Cheever Audio Collection
John Cheever, author
Performed by Meryl Streep, George Plimpton, John Cheever, et. a.
c/o HarperCollins Publishers
10 East 53rd Street, New York, NY 10022-5299
9780061965357 $14.99 1-800-242-7737

The John Cheever Audio Collection is an audiobook compendium of twelve unabridged stories by Pulitzer Prize-winning American author John Cheever. Skillfully performed by a diversity of celebrities, The John Cheever Audio Collection brings these modern tales to vivid life, and is a fantastic choice for public library collections or anyone who loves great storytelling while on the go. The short stories are "The Enormous Radio" (read by Meryl Streep), "The Five-Forty-Eight" (Edward Herrmann), "O City of Broken Dreams" (Blythe Danner), "Christmas is a Sad Season for the Poor" (George Plimpton), "The Season of Divorce" (Edward Herrmann), "The Brigadier and the Golf Widow" (Peter Gallagher), "The Sorrows of Gin" (Meryl Streep), "O Youth and Beauty!" (Peter Gallagher), "The Chaste Clarissa" (Blythe Danner), "The Jewels of the Cabots" (George Plimpton), "The Death of Justina" (John Cheever) and "The Swimmer" (John Cheever). 6 CDs, 6 1/2 hours.

Magic City
Jewell Parker Rhodes, author
Cherise Boothe, narrator
Recorded Books, LLC
270 Skip Jack Road, Prince Frederick, MD 20678
9781440726644 $123.75 1-800-638-1304

Magic City is the unabridged audiobook adaptation of a striking novel about racial tensions. In 1921 Tulsa, a black man and a white woman get on an elevator. The woman screams, and suddenly the man is forced to flee a lynch mob on the streets. Falsely accused of rape, aspiring magician Joe must run for his life, while the woman whose scream put him in such dire straits must search herself for the courage to tell the whole truth, even as racial tensions threaten to destroy the whole community. A tense and vivid drama, Magic City is powerful to the very end, and highly recommended. 10 CDs, 11 hours.

The Wild Things
Dave Eggers, author
Dion Graham, narrator
Blackstone Audiobooks
PO Box 969, Ashland, OR 97520
9781433297335 $90.00 1-800-729-2665

Veteran actor and narrator Dion Graham lends his voice to The Wild Things, an unabridged audiobook adaptation of the screenplay of "Where the Wild Things Are", which is in turn based upon the classic children's picturebook. The Wild Things considerably fleshes out the simple picturebook story, drawing listeners into the struggles of a confused young boy who misses his father, and doesn't understand why his mother is spending time with a new boyfriend or the drastic changes in his sister as she becomes a teenager. Max's own wildness erupts when he wears a wolf suit and bites his mother; running away from home, he takes a boat to the land of the Wild Things and becomes their king. But life is not so simple even among the Wild Things, who want as much from Max as he wants from them. An absorbing experience for listeners of all ages, highly recommended as a gift or for public library audiobook collections. 5 CDs, 6 1/2 hours.

Linda Howard, author
Fred Sanders, narrator
Random House Audio Books
c/o The Random House Publishing Group
1745 Broadway, 8th floor, New York, NY 10019
9780307577610 $30.00 1-800-726-0600

Ice: A Novel is the unabridged audiobook production of the harrowing suspense novel by award-winning author Linda Howard. On holiday leave from the service, Gabriel McQueen accedes to his sheriff father's request to check on a distant neighbor who has fallen out of contact. He travels to Lolly's home to find her in dire straits - strangers have invaded, and at least one of them is packing a weapon. It will take all his stealth training to extract Lolly from the house and for the two of them to survive as an ice storm descends upon the area. A chilling saga of the struggle to survive against ruthless enemies and intractable forces of nature, sure to keep listeners on the edge of their seat until the very end.

Madeleine L'Engle, author
Ann Marie Lee, narrator
Listening Library, Inc.
1745 Broadway, New York, NY 10019
9780739380918 $39.00 1-800-726-0600

Camilla is the unabridged audiobook adaptation of a novel by Madeleine L'Engle, the author of the widely beloved classic "A Wrinkle in Time". Fifteen-year-old Camilla Dickinson has long lived a sheltered life, but when her parents' marriage begins to fail, she's caught in the middle of emotional turmoil. She becomes close to Frank, her best friend's brother, and the one person she can really talk to about life, death, God, and her aspiration to become an astronomer. They travel the streets of New York City together, and Frank introduces her to a world of people she'd never met or known before - but will her first love end as badly as the dying love between her parents? Superbly narrated by Ann Marie Lee, who has appeared in numerous television shows including "ER", "Law & Order: Criminal Intent", and "Nip/Tuck", Camilla is enthusiastically recommended for listeners of all ages and public library audiobook collections. 6 CDs, 7 hours 36 minutes.

The Schuman Frequency
Christopher Ride, author
Sean Mangan, narrator
Bolinda Publishing
186 S Long Swamp Rd, Jackson, ME 04921
9781921334665 $39.95

Skillfully brought to life by the narration of singer and musician Sean Mangan, The Schumann Frequency is the audiobook adaptation a striking thriller about a time-traveling agent - Wilson Dowling, sent from the future to confront the Schumann Frequency, which has the power to slow the speed of time. Working from clues nestled within the Dead Sea Scrolls, Dowling must open three energy portals, each in a different famous archaeological site. Dowling must work quickly, for he is confronted by forces that threaten humanity, life on the planet, and perhaps the fabric of time itself. An enthralling adventure from start to finish, highly recommended especially for long car or airline trips. 13 CDs, 16 hours 45 minutes.

The White Queen
Philippa Gregory, author
Susan Lyons, narrator
Recorded Books, LLC
270 Skip Jack Road, Prince Frederick, MD 20678
9781440741920 $123.75 1-800-638-1304

Skillfully read aloud by Susan Lyons, The White Queen is the unabridged audiobook adaptation of the first in a series of historical novels set during the chaos of the War of the Roses. The story follows Elizabeth Woodville, a woman of humble origin yet stunning beauty. The widow of a knight, Elizabeth plies her charm to win the affections of King Edward IV, yet when their secret marriage becomes public knowledge Elizabeth acquires relentless enemies. After Edward's unexpected death in 1483, his brother claims the throne, imprisoning Elizabeth's sons and forcing her to escape. But Elizabeth's most dangerous weapon is nothing less than her eldest daughter! An extraordinary portrayal of Henry VIII's grandmother, The White Queen is an utterly absorbing dramatization of history. 13 CDs, 15 1/4 hours.

Wolf Hall
Hilary Mantel
Macmillan Audio
175 Fifth Avenue, Suite 315, New York, NY 10010
9781427210166 $49.99

Wolf Hall is the unabridged audiobook adaptation of prize-winning British author Hilary Mantel's novel set in the ruthless climate of King Henry VIII's court. King Henry VIII is without a male heir, and if he dies without a successor, the land is sure to be ravaged by civil war. The king wants to annul his marriage of twenty years and marry Anne Boleyn, yet the pope and Catholic Europe stand in his way. Into the power struggle between the Church and the Crown strides Thomas Cromwell, whose ambition, silver tongue, and self-taught political skill maneuver him into the nations second most powerful figure after Henry. Cromwell finds a way to break the deadlock allow the king to follow his heart's wish, but Henry's moods are volatile at best - what will be the ultimate price of the King's demands? Simon Slater's narration brings to life this sweeping saga of power and danger, where a single misstep spells brutal doom. Highly recommended. 18 CDs, 23 hours.

Highest Duty
Capt. Chesley "Sully" Sullenberger
Jeffrey Zaslow
Michael McConnohie, narrator
HarperCollins Publishers
10 East 53rd Street, New York, NY 10022-5299
9780061953255 $39.99 1-800-242-7737

Vibrantly read aloud by Michael McConnohie (with some selections read by the author), Highest Duty: My Search for What Really Matters is the unabridged audiobook adaptation of the autobiography of Captain "Sully" Sullenberger - a man best known for landing a crippled US Airways flight in upon the Hudson River, saving the lives of all the passengers and crew. This successful landing was the result of teamwork, cooperation, and training; In Highest Duty, Sullenberger teaches listener about these values, as well as the importance of keeping one's judgement abreast of current technology. Highest Duty goes beyond airline matters to reach into the essence of America's "can do" spirit, the flame of optimism and the courage to do what's right that are among mankind's highest virtues. The dedicated life story of an extraordinary man with much to teach, Highest Duty is highly recommended. An enhanced CD also includes a cockpit voice recorder transcript of the plane crash. 8 CDs, 9 1/4 hours.

The Library DVD Shelf

Stories from the Vaults: Season Two
Tom Cavanagh, host
Smithsonian Networks & Infinity Entertainment Group
Greenleaf & Associates (publicity)
$19.98 DVD, $29.98 Blu-ray

Stories from the Vaults: Season Two is an eclectic, family-friendly collection of episodes that take viewers into the historical mysteries investigated by the Smithsonian Museum and its affiliates. From the wonders of the rainforest, to the quandary of trying to preserve sculptures made of chocolate and soap (and guess which inherently unstable substance is harder to preserve - no, it's not the one that guests try to eat!), to surprising true tales of some of America's most notorious criminals, Stories from the Vaults both entertains and edifies. Highly recommended especially for public library collections. The episodes are "Let's Eat!", "Nature's Vault", "Crystal Ball", "going, Going, Gone", "Sex 101" and "Villains and Rogues" plus bonus mini-featurettes. Approximately 200 minutes, available on DVD and Blu-ray.

Seven Wonders of the Muslim World
c/o SSA Public Relations
15260 Ventura Boulevard, Suite 1730, Sherman Oaks, CA 91403

Seven Wonders of the Muslim World: Six Journeys of Faith to the Heart of the Islamic World is an eye-opening documentary following six young Muslims on their life-changing pilgrimage to the holy site of Mecca. As they journey, they encounter some of the most beautiful and historic locations of worship. The seven wonders featured are The Grand Mosque in Mecca; the Al-Aqsa Mosque in Jerusalem; The Alhambra in Granada, Spain; The Blue Mosque in Istanbul, Turkey; The Great Mosque of Djenne in Mali; the Imam Mosque in Esfahan, Iran; and the Badshahi Mosque in Lahore, Pakistan. A wondrous and unforgettable documentary encompassing centuries of history and profound respect for the rich faith of Islam. 60 minutes.

Travel With Kids: Costa Rica
Janson Media
88 Semmens Road, Harrington Park, NJ 07640
9781568393237 $17.98

Part of the award-winning "Travel With Kids" series, Travel With Kids: Costa Rica invites the viewer to experience eco-travel and adventure in a nation famous for its beautiful cloud forest preserves, vast volcanic formations, beaches, and family-friendly activities. Following the Roberts' family's adventures along with solid travel advice for parents and children alike, Travel With Kids: Costa Rica is an excellent supplement to preparing for a Costa Rican vacation. Bonus features include a trip planner with expanded information on activities, accommodation, and transportation; family travel tips and resources; a "Costa Rica at Home" section offering language and craft activities as well as recipes; and a bloopers reel. Highly recommended. 57 minutes.

c/o 411 Video Information
PO Box 1223, Pebble Beach, CA 93953
$14.98 each

Denise Austin hosts two excellent fitness DVDs designed to help one quickly get into the habit of a solid, fat-blasting exercise regimen! "3-Week Boot Camp" (52 min.) offers two high-powered, twenty-minute workouts emphasizing cardio and strength training, plus a bonus Ab Fat Blaster section. A great addition to fitness libraries, "3-Week Boot Camp" lives up to its title as an exercise routine sure to help the viewer look and feel better in short time! Simple, inexpensive hand weights are advised to get the most out of the workout, and a music-only option is available. "Body Makeover Mix" (49 min.) offers three 15-minute workouts for toning one's muscles: Upper-Body Sculpt, Lower-Body Sculpt, and Ab & Core Conditioning (which includes standing moves and some mat Pilates). A custom workout interactive option and a music-only option enhance this excellent muscle training DVD. Both DVDs are worthy additions to any fitness library, and highly recommended.

The Big Question
Deepak Chopra, Thich Nhat Hanh, Desmond Tutu, Sr. Helen Prejean, Rev. Joseph Lowery
Vision Video
PO Box 540, Worcester, PA 19490-0540
$19.99 1-800-523-0226

The Big Question: A Film About Forgiveness is a DVD documentary about what it takes to confront reprehensible crimes. When individuals, mobs, or even government oppression exact unspeakable cruelty, how should one react? Should one forgive rapists, murderers, police whose bungled procedures allow the worst criminals to roam the streets, or government forces that kill and oppress innocents? What path will bring about the most justice, protect the most innocents, or minimize the risk of history's evils repeating themselves? Many great leaders and people of strong moral conviction are interviewed, including Desmond Tutu, Sr. Helen Prejean, Thich Nhat Hanh, Rev. Joseph Lowery, Deepak Chopra, Sri Sri Ravi Shankar, Hopi Elders, and more. Also included is the bonus feature "The Five Steps to Forgiveness" with Dr. Everett Worthington, and a three-lesson PDF study guide for group discussion. 63 minutes, English subtitles.

The Zombies: Odessey & Oracle Revisited
Rod Argent, Colin Blunstone, Chris White, & Hugh Grundy
MVD Entertainment Group
PO Box 280, Oaks, PA 19456
$19.95 1-800-888-0486

Dedicated to the late, great fifth member of the The Zombies (Paul Atkinson 1946-2004), The Zombies: Odessey & Oracle Revisited is a DVD of the 40th anniversary reunion concert of the original four members of "The Zombies" band (Rod Argent, Colin Blunstone, Christ White & Hugh Grundy), as performed at the Shepherd's Bush Empire in London, March of 2008. The Zombies perform their complete "Odessey & Oracle" album - all 12 tracks are recreated, sung and played with pure passion. Also included are the rest of the songs played by The Zombies' Touring Band that night, from songs that The Zombies and Argent made famous to selections from Colin Blunstone's solo albums. A glorious celebration of music, The Zombies: Odessey & Oracle Revisited is an absolute "must-have" for anyone who loves The Zombies' songs. 121 minutes.

Akasha Productions
411 Video Information
PO Box 1223, Pebble Beach, CA 93953
$19.95 each

Dancer and choreographer Meera Varma hosts two "Dances of India" fitness DVDs, which take the viewer on an invigorating workout tour of energetic and highly enjoyable dance routines grounded in the popular culture of East India. "Dances of India: Bollywood to Bollydance with Meera" (71 min.) features cinematic-style dance, blending classical Indian dance movements with influences of folk and western dances to create a warmup, workout, and cooldown worthy of a movie star. The performance music video "Maya" is a highlight bonus feature. "Dances of India: Urban Bhangra Bounce with Meera" (60 min.) introduces viewers to the "hip-hop" of India, featuring a high-energy workout marked by motivational drumbeats. The performance music video "Mystic Asman" is a highlight bonus feature. Both DVDs are an exceptional addition to DVD fitness libraries in need of a little spice from halfway around the globe, and choice picks for anyone interested in trying something different and exciting for their daily workout. Also highly recommended are "Dances of India: Ancient to Modern" and "Bellydance: The Art of Toning and Technique".

Framing, Matting, & Hanging: A Beginner's Guide
Larry Withers, host
On Air Video Inc.
8203 Westminster Rd., Elkins Park, PA 19027

Expert fine arts craftsman Larry Withers presents Framing, Matting, & Hanging: A Beginner's Guide is a no-nonsense DVD guide to protecting one's artwork in framing and matting for its protection and enhancement. Using simple tools and materials available at any hardware store, one can follow the step-by-step directions to select an appropriate mat and frame, cut a single or double-mat, mount artwork, make one's own frame molding, cut and assemble the frame, paint and decorate the frame, display artwork, and use conservation framing techniques. An easy-to-follow how-to guide, highly recommended for anyone interested in learning the basics of preparing art or photographs for display. 88 minutes.

Chefs A' Field
PBS Home Video
c/o SSA Public Relations
15260 Ventura Boulevard, Suite 1730, Sherman Oaks, CA 91403
0793670926 $34.99

Chefs A' Field: Culinary Adventures that Begin on the Farm collects the fourth season of the PBS documentary of culinary adventures across the Americas, from Alaska to Hawaii to Mexico's Yucatan jungle. Of particular note is the emphasis not only on the skills of great chefs, but also on eco-friendly foods. Local farmers and fishermen contribute their wisdom on responsible and sustainable food production, followed by a behind-the-scenes lesson in great cooking (advanced professional cooking techniques are simplified in order to be accessible to viewers of all ages and backgrounds). Enhanced with PDFs offering special tips and recipes from the series, Chefs A' Field is a culinary gourmet's delight, and highly recommended for anyone who loves truly great cooking shows. 6.5 hours, closed captioned, widescreen.

The Biography Shelf

Andrew Taylor Still: 1828-1917
Carol Trowbridge
Truman State University Press
100 East Normal Street, Kirksville, MO 63501-4221
9781931112789 $30.00 1-800-916-6802

Andrew Taylor Still: 1828-1917 is the biography of a truly remarkable man of medicine. After three of his children died from meningitis in 1864, he focused his life upon finding the cause of and cure for the disease. Still created the philosophy of osteopathy, an approach to health care emphasizing the musculoskeletal system, eschewing drugs. A pioneer of holistic medicine who was never fully understood by his peers and colleagues, Still's practice and his devotion to patient-centered care permanently changed the field of medicine, up to the present day. Andrew Taylor Still 1828-1917 is an absorbing biography of a little-known yet far-reaching man of medicine and learning, highly recommended especially for college library collections.

A Woman Alone
John A. Harrison
Frank Amato Publications
PO Box 82112, Portland, OR 97282
9781571884527 $19.95

A Woman Alone: Mona Bell, Sam Hill and the Mansion at Bonneville Rock is the biographical portrait of a truly remarkable modern-day pioneer woman and early feminist, Mona Bell. She fought a legal battle with the federal government in the state of Oregon, when the Army commandeered her hilltop mansion and surrounding riverfront acreage in Columbia River Gorge to build Bonneville Dam. A huntress of considerable skill and marksmanship, she was once arrested in Kenya for going into the bush without a white hunter, and embarked on the same pursuit in Uganda. But she preferred to shoot big game with a camera rather than weapons. She traveled the world on her own, and her adventurous life would later cause her daughter-in-law to say about her, "She was a woman alone, and she was OK with it." A one-of-a-kind true story about a one-of-a-kind woman, highly recommended.

Barney Frank
Stuart E. Weisberg
University of Massachusetts Press
PO Box 429, Amherst, MA 01004
9781558497214 $29.95 1-800-537-5487

Grounded in interviews with over 150 people, Barney Frank: The Story of America's Only Left-Handed, Gay, Jewish Congressman is a comprehensive biography of the unusual American legislator whose recent landmarks include helping to craft a compromise bill to halt the increasing wave of home mortgage foreclosures, and the $700 billion "rescue plan" that followed. An evenhanded portrait, Barney Frank: The Story of America's Only Left-Handed, Gay, Jewish Congressman reveals both Frank's strengths and talents in communication and alliance-building, and his more negative side - such as his impatience, which is has all but become the stuff of White House legend. Of especial interest is the particular pressures Frank has come under as arguably the most prominent and widely known openly gay politician in America (his career was almost ended by a publicized sex scandal with a male prostitute). An excellent portrait of a career pragmatist and a skilled legislator, Barney Frank: The Story of America's Only Left-Handed, Gay, Jewish Congressman is an enthusiastically recommended addition to American biography collections.

A Spy's Journey
Floyd L. Paseman
Zenith Press
c/o MBI Publishing Company
400 First Avenue North, Suite 300, Minneapolis, MN 55401
9780760337356, $17.99,

What is the life of a real spy during the roughest times of the cold war? "A Spy' s Journey: A CIA Memoir" is the memoir of Floyd L. Paseman, telling his story of rising through the ranks of the CIA across the span of decades, serving his country in the divided territory of Germany. "A Spy's Journey" is an utterly fascinating read, of highest recommendation for those who want a taste of real spy life.

To Die for the People
Huey Newton
City Lights Books
261 Columbus Avenue, San Francisco, CA 94133
9780872865297, $16.95,

The fight against injustice and cruelty pushes people to new heights. "To Die for the People" is a biography of Huey Newton, founder of the Black Panther party, and has been labeled a radical all of his life. Offering insights to one of the biggest influences of the civil rights movement and black power movements of the 1960s and 70s, his story is one that's crucial to understanding the social changes of the second half of the twentieth century. "To Die for the People" is a worthwhile addition to any collection focusing on social issues and memoirs.

Rural Free
Rachel Peden
Quarry Books
c/o Indiana University press
601 N. Morton Street, Bloomington, IN 47404
9780253221612, $19.95,

Quickly fading from present memory, there is a certain charm to rural life. "Rural Free: A Farmwife's Almanac of Country Living" is a memoir of country life, seeking to emphasize the values one gets from living on the farm and what it teaches people about the world around them. Poignant and intriguing, "Rural Free" is worth considering for those who want to gain a better understanding of how most of America lived throughout its history.

Summers Long Ago
William H. McNeill & Ruth J. McNeill
Berkshire Publishing Group
120-122 Castle Street, Great Barrington, MA 01230-1506
9781933782713, $25.00,

It's a privilege not everyone has, and keeps fading as time rolls on. "Summers Long Ago: On Grandfather's Farm and in Grandmother's Kitchen" is a memoir of William McNeill reflecting on the summers with his grandparents on a Canadian coastal farm. Reminiscing about the profound lessons he learned during these times, he shows how his experiences shaped him into the historian he is today. "Summers Long Ago" is quite the unique and inspiring story, and is well worth the consideration.

The Theatre/Cinema/TV Shelf

Keep Watching the Skies!
Bill Warren
McFarland & Company
PO Box 611, Jefferson NC 28640 1-800-253-2187
9780786442300 $99.00,

Now in an updated and revised 21st century edition featuring new entries on several films not listed in the original, Keep Watching the Skies! American Science Fiction Movies of the Fifties is an exhaustive reference compendium, arranged alphabetically by film title and illustrated with more than 270 photographs, some in color. Each entry includes a detailed synopsis, a summary of what various reviews said about the movie, and a credits listing. An easy-to-use index and nine handy appendices round out this one-of-a-kind reference perfect for public and college library collections, as well as the private libraries of sci-fi movie enthusiasts.

Sheldon's Gift
Thomas L. Olson
North Star Press of St. Cloud
PO Box 451, St. Cloud, MN 56302-0451
9780878393183 $16.95 1-888-820-1636

Sheldon's Gift: Music, Movies and Melodrama in the Desirable City is a close look at the 150-year history of theaters and show business in Red Wing, Minnesota. Red Wing native, university administrator and philanthropist Tom Olson weaves the amazing true stories of itinerant actors and musicians, grand opera houses (and some not-so-grand), the impact of the rise of Hollywood and Golden Age, the vanishing of the silver screens, and much more. An expertly researched chronicle, enthusiastically recommended for anyone curious about the evolution of performance arts in microcosm.

The Literary Shelf

Not Even Past
Dorothy Stringer
Fordham University Press
University Box L, 2546 Belmont Ave, Bronx, NY 10458
9780823231478, $45.00,

Prejudice of the past leads to intolerance of the future. "Not Even Past: Race, Historical Trauma, and Subjectivity in Faulkner, Larsen, and Van Vechten" discusses race in early twentieth century literature, focusing on the writers of distinguished writers William Faulkner, Nella Larsen, and the art of Carl Van Vechten. Their work, under the scrutinous eyes of their contemporaries and more modern philosophy, has lead to much of the influence in modern white supremacy movements says author Dorothy Singer. Intriguing and valuable reading, "Not Even Past" is a must for any literary collection focusing on issues of race.

A History of the Doc Savage Adventures
Robert Michael "Bobb" Cotter
McFarland & Company
PO Box 611, Jefferson NC 28640 1-800-253-2187
9780786441358 $55.00,

A History of the Doc Savage Adventures in Pulps, Paperbacks, Comics, Fanzines, Radio and Film is an in-depth compendium of information about the popular stories featuring legendary action-adventure icon Doc Savage. From Doc Savage's origin in a "Street & Smith" pulp magazine, to the changes (and the consistencies) in the character and his dramatic journeys throughout the decades, to Doc Savage's appearances in media ranging from paperbacks to graphic novels to radio, the silver screen, and even fan creations, A History of the Doc Savage Adventures lives up to its title with a wealth of meticulous research, including a spotlight on (and brief summary of the plot of) published Doc Savage stories. A handful of black-and-white photographs illustrate this welcome addition to college library literary studies shelves with an emphasis on popular culture. A History of the Doc Savage Adventures is also, of course, a "must-have" for any diehard Doc Savage fan!

1000 Comic Books You Must Read
Tony Isabella
Krause Publications
700 East State Street, Iola, WI 54990-0001
9780896899216, $29.99,

Since the 1930s, comic books have had their place in society. "1000 Comic Books You Must Read" is a guide to the best of what comics have to offer throughout their history. From 1938 and Superman's first appearance in action comics, to the popularity of the modern graphic novel, there is much comic history to enjoy within the volume. "1000 Comic Books you Must Read" is a strong choice for any comics fan seeking a review of the format's history.

Oliver Wendell Holmes: Physician and Man of Letters
Scott H. Podolsky and Charles S. Bryan, editors
Science History Press
PO Box 1240, Sagamore Beach, MA 02562-1240
9780881353792 $35.00

Oliver Wendell Holmes: Physician and Man of Letters is an anthology of essays by learned authors discussing physician, author, and poet Oliver Wendell Holmes (1809-1894), whose distinguished colleagues included the legendary Ralph Waldo Emerson and Henry Wadsworth Longfellow. Writings include "A Private Pestilence: Holmes and Puerperal Fever", "Doctor Holmes: The Life in Conversion", and "Oliver Wendell Holmes's Depth Psychology: A Reconstruction", as well as an amazingly broad selection of quotable excerpts by Holmes himself. An excellent contribution to literary biography shelves, especially recommended for college library collections. "We must not allow any creed or religion whatsoever to confiscate to its own private use and benefit the virtues which belong to our common humanity."

The Military Shelf

Hell in An Loc
Lam Quang Thi
University of North Texas Press
PO Box 311336, Denton, TX 76203-1336
9781574412765 $29.95

Hell in An Loc: The 1972 Easter Invasion and the Battle That Saved South Viet Nam is a unique military history, written primarily to tell the story of a critical battle from the South Vietnamese point of view. Four years after the Tet offensive, the North Vietnamese army initiated a furious assault that would have taken South Vietnam save that it was stymied in An Loc, a former rubber plantation town sixty miles from the capital. Outnumbered and outgunned, the South Vietnamese army held out against three North Vietnamese army divisions, supported by artillery and armored regiments, for three long months. Yet this strong victory was all but ignored by the American media, which had ceased to focus upon the war after the disengagement of U.S. forces and the Vietnamization of the conflict. Author Lam Quang Thi postulates that the South Vietnamese victory in An Loc contradicted widespread beliefs that the Vietnamese war could not be won because the South Vietnamese army was a corrupt and unskilled at war, and therefore this potentially disruptive victory was played down. A meticulous account created specifically to set the historical record straight, Hell in An Loc is highly recommended especially for college library and military history collections focusing on the Vietnam conflict.

Operation Phantom Fury
Dick Camp
Zenith Press
c/o Quayside Publishing Group
400 First Avenue North, Suite 300, Minneapolis, MN 55401
9780760336984 $30.00 1-800-458-0454

Retired Marine Corps full colonel and Vietnam combat veteran Dick Camp presents Operation Phantom Fury: The Assault and Capture of Fallujah, Iraq, an in-depth portrait of the second battle for Fallujah, which was the Marine Corps' biggest battle in Iraq, and arguably the most important battle during the entire occupation. Though Fallujah did not receive severe damage during the initial U.S. invasion of Iraq in 2003, strife between civilians, insurgents, and coalition forces erupted into violence with the murder and desecration of four Blackwater contractors. The U.S. Marine and Army forces, along with a number of Iraqi Army battalions, had to confront the lethal task of retaking Fallujah from insurgents. An expertly researched, harrowingly presented account of the pivotal battle, highly recommended especially for military history collections with a focus on the Iraq Wars.

The Hunting/Fishing Shelf

Fly-Fishing Secrets of the Ancients
Paul Schullery
University of New Mexico Press
1312 Basehart Road SE, Albuquerque NM 87106-4363
9780826346889 $29.95 1-800-249-7737

Award-winning historian-naturalist Paul Schullery presents Fly-Fishing Secrets of the Ancients: A Celebration of Five Centuries of Lore and Wisdom. Fly-Fishing Secrets of the Ancients is not exactly a standard how-to guide, but rather a compendium of observations, research, and passion about the theories, techniques, and discoveries that have shaped the fly fishing pastime up to the modern day. From "Superfine and Very Strong: The Rise and Fall of Silkworm Gut" to "Pacific Salmon and the Myth of Uncatchability" to "The Long Haul: Where Did the Double Haul Come from, and Why Didn't It Get Here Sooner?", the chapters engage and edify the reader. Even the most devoted and knowledgeable of veteran fly fishers is sure to discover new fascinating facts and gain a better appreciation of the sport as a whole. Highly recommended as supplementary resource for anyone curious to learn more about fly-fishing from the ground up, and an excellent gift to anyone who enjoys fly-fishing, whether as a casual hobby or a lifetime devotion.

The Civil War Shelf

Missouri's War
Silvana R. Siddali, editor
Ohio University Press
19 Circle Drive, Athens, OH 45701
9780821417324 $18.65 1-800-621-2736

Missouri's War: The Civil War in Documents is an anthology of collected documents that serve as primary sources testifying about the motivations of Missouri's citizens before, during, and after the Civil War with an emphasis upon the war years. Missouri was unique in that it was the only Midwestern slave state, and quite literally one of the front lines between Union and Confederate armies. Its citizens had good reason to fear both antislavery guerillas (jaywalkers) and pro-Confederate guerillas (bushwhackers). Missouri's War is a superb gathering of letters, documents, and testimonies revealing how individuals coped with difficult times, and is strongly recommended especially for college library Civil War and Missouri history shelves.

The Buddhist Studies Shelf

The Art of Happiness in a Troubled World
The Dalai Lama and Howard C. Cutler, MD
Doubleday & Company
c/o Random House
1745 Broadway, New York, NY 10019
Planned Television Arts (publicity)
1110 Second Avenue, 3rd Floor, New York, NY 10022
9780767920643 $26.00 1-800-726-0600

Buddhist spiritual leader, His Holiness the Dalai Lama and psychiatrist/neurology expert Howard C. Cutler, MD present The Art of Happiness in a Troubled World, a guide to help readers of all faiths better understand the roots of human misery worldwide, and work to alleviate suffering while learning to experience personal happiness. Chapters discuss the prejudice as the "Us versus Them" mind-set that can blossom into extreme nationalism; the causes of violence and human cruelty; the human capacity for hope and compassion; the role of positive emotions in building a better world; and much more. A practical as well as spiritual guide, The Art of Happiness in a Troubled World lives up to its title and is enthusiastically recommended not only for Buddhist studies shelves, but also for anyone seeking to improve their own lives and the lives of others.

The Environmental Studies Shelf

John R. Wennersten
Chesapeake Book Company
c/o Alan C. Hood & Company (distribution)
PO Box 775, Chambersburg, PA 17201
9780963515964 $20.00

Anacostia: The Death & Life of an American River is the history of Washington's Anacostia River, and the people who lived near it. Part environmental study, part social history, Anacostia is particularly fascinating in its stinging analysis of how programs promoting eminent domain and "urban renewal" meant to raze and replace alleged "slums" and "blighted areas" actually created slums by forcing people out of stable neighborhoods, then quickly assembling shoddy public housing east of the river, concentrating the displaced poor in an area that inevitably gave rise to crime and drug markets. Anacostia goes on to examine governmental policies that all but ensures the river's ruin, followed by a call to re-examine the drive for growth for its own sake, and the cost that lack of proper regulation imposes on America's waterways and its citizens. A thoughtful, well-researched, and provocative history, bearing a message that needs to be heard, especially as America's population continues to increase - and as the political power of polluting industries continues to grow.

Climate Warming in Western North America
Frederic H. Wagner, editor
The University of Utah Press
295 South 1500 East, Suite 5400, Salt Lake City, UT 84112-0860
9780874809060, $29.95,

The environment of the western United States is truly a unique one. "Climate Warming in Western North America: Evidence and Environmental Effects" discusses climate change and how it affects this unique ecosystem of the western United States, which is driven by snowfall as its water supply. A warming climate could have disastrous effects on the West as we know it. There is much scholarly debate within "Climate Warming in Western North America"; it's a solid addition to any collection focusing on the environment.

Catastrophe in the Making
William R. Freudenburg & Collaborators
Island Press
1718 Connecticut Ave., NW, Suite 300, Washington, DC 20009
9781597266826, $26.95,

Could mankind have brought Katrina onto itself? "Catastrophe in the Making: The Engineering of Katrina and the Disasters of Tomorrow" discusses how the scientific impact of mankind and how environmental factors where man has altered the world around them and those actions allow bigger and more powerful storms to assault civilization. "Catastrophe in the Making" is a very much recommended read for those who want to better understand climate charge and its serious effects.

Go Green Rating Scale
Phil Boise
Redleaf Press
10 Yorkton Court, St. Paul, MN 55117-1065
9781605540061, $19.95,

A clean environment sets a good example and a good place for learning. "Go Green Rating Scale: for Early Childhood Settings" is a guide for offering a clean environment for young children that is conducive to learning. With plenty of checklists to help people be aware of the many hidden dangers that could be problematic for young people, "Go Green Rating Scale" is an ideal acquisition for any preparing an establishment for use by young children.

The Language Studies Shelf

Thai for Travelers
Benjawan Poomsan Becker
Paiboon Publishing
PMB 256, 1442A Walnut Street, Berkeley, CA 94709
9781887521789 $15.00 1-800-837-2979

Thai for Travelers is an easy-to-use phrasebook and companion audio CD designed to help busy travelers quickly learn basic, useful Thai words and phrases. The thirteen chapters cover making a basic introduction, phone conversations, matters of food, drink, getting around through public transportation, and lodging, health matters, emergency matters, small talk, and even love and romance. A compact, no-nonsense means ideal for quickly acquainting oneself with the Thai language, Thai for Travelers is an absolute "must" for first-time visitors to the Land of Smiles. Highly recommended.

Handy Stories to Read and Sign
Donna Jo Napoli & Doreen DeLuca
Gallaudet University Press
800 Florida Avenue, NE, Washington, DC 20002-3695
9781563684074, $19.95,

Sign language can be a valuable tool even for those who have the full power of hearing. "Handy Stories to Read and Sign" is an easy-reader book aimed at helping readers master both written English and American sign language. With simple writing and simple diagrams of sign language, anyone who wants to help their children gain an understanding of both should consider "Handy Stories to Read and Sign", a top pick for young readers.

The Antiques/Collectibles Shelf

Star Wars Super Collector's Wish Book, fifth edition
Geoffrey T. Carlton
Collector Books
PO Box 3009, Paducah, KY 42002-3009
9781574326345 $29.95

Now in a newly updated fifth edition, Star Wars Super Collector's Wish Book is a guide to all sorts of Star Wars collectibles and memorabilia. Featuring over 10,000 color photographs, Star Wars Super Collector's Wish Book is primarily an identification and price guide (little more than a name, price, and often a photograph is present for each listing), enhanced with a handful of brief and intriguing articles about Star Wars collecting, such as "How to Go On, Now that the Movies Are Done?", "Star Wars Intangible Collectibles", and more. A "must-have" for Star Wars collection enthusiasts, and a superb resource for hobby dealers.

The Railroading Shelf

The Model Railroader's Guide to Diesel Locomotives
Jeff Wilson
Kalmbach Publishing Company
21027 Crossroads Circle, Waukesha, WI 53186
9780890247617 $19.95 1-800-533-6644

The Model Railroader's Guide to Diesel Locomotives is an invaluable reference for model railroad hobbyists of all skill and experience levels. Absolutely no historically-accurate detail is spared in this minutely specific guide to history and development of diesel locomotives, from the boxcab switchers of the 1920s to the passenger and freight locomotives of the 30's and 40's to modern-day AC-traction-motor road locomotives. Charts of construction and service dates for each locomotive type will aid the hobbyist in selecting a historically appropriate model for each setting. It should be noted that The Model Railroader's Guide to Diesel Locomotives is a guide to the history, function, and appearance of diesel locomotives - it is not a step-by-step how-to guide for building them. Indeed, the wealth of researched information ultimately warrants its classification as a book about railroading history rather than a hobbyist book, even though the primary intended audience is model railroad hobbyists. An unparalleled resource on its chosen topic, highly recommended for anyone interested in pursuing detailed research on diesel locomotives.

The Photography Shelf

Peter Oxford & Graham Watkins
300 East 34th Street, Suite 21k, New York, NY 10016
9780982293935, $35.00,

The Galapagos Islands are a unique and unspoiled location with a rich natural history. "Galapagos" is a photography book offering countless full color photographs of the natural creatures and habitat that make the islands distinct and natural beauty. Truly magnificent, it combines history and the photos well making for quite the mental and visual treat. "Galapagos" is a treasure that is highly recommended and should not be overlooked by nature lovers, or anyone looking for something special for their coffee table.

Light, Shadow & Skin Tone
Bill Lemon
Atlantic Publishing Group, Inc.
1405 S.W. 6th Avenue, Ocala, FL 34471
9781601383907 $39.95 1-800-814-1132

Light, Shadow & Skin Tone: The Complete Guide to Shooting Black & White Glamour Photography Digitally and on Film lives up to its title by offering captivating black-and-white images, paired with an in-depth discussion of how each image was created. Female models, often nude from the waist up, feature prominently in these expertly lit and captured images. One of the captions for a particularly striking image reads, "Note how the dark lingerie around the model's waist almost matches the color of her hair. In color, the lingerie is black and the model has red hair. When converted to black and white, a redhead will usually look like a brunette." An excellent guide for aspiring and professional black-and-white glamour photographs - though anyone with an appreciation for the beauty of female form is sure to enjoy paging through Light, Shadow & Skin Tone as well!

Ordinary Lives
Rania Matar
The Quantuck Lane Press
c/o W. W. Norton & Company
500 Fifth Avenue, New York, NY 10110
9781593720377, $39.95,

Life in a recovering nation is a unique experience. "Ordinary Lives" discusses the plight of girls and women in post-civil war Lebanon. With a huge collection of photos in high quality black and white, telling the story through text and photos. Discussing major topics than affect Islamic woman life from men to the veil, and more, "Ordinary Lives" is an intriguing and very highly recommended read for any who want a coffee table book recording the plight of Lebanese women.

The Humor Shelf

The Complete Geezer Guidebook
Charles F. Adams
Quill Driver Books
c/o Linden Publishing
2006 S. Mary Street, Fresno, CA 93721
9781884956980, $14.95,

Anyone can be old. It takes a certain determination to be a geezer. "The Complete Geezer Guidebook: Everything You Need to Know About Being Old and Grumpy" is a humorous exploration on how to be old and hate every second of it. With plenty of wisdom to make even the nicest old person reconsider their attitudes on how to be ornery, it's packed cover to cover with cartoons pulled from the New Yorker demonstrating its undeniably correct points. "The Complete Geezer Handbook" is a worthy pick.

Haynes Johnson and Harry Katz
W. W. Norton & Company
500 Fifth Avenue, New York, NY 10110
9780393067729 $35.00

Herblock: The Life and Work of the Great Political Cartoonist is a representative compendium of the satirical political cartoons of Pulitzer Prize-winning cartoonist Herbert Lawrence Block (1909-2001), a.k.a. "Herblock", who lengthy career spanned nearly three-quarters of a century and the careers of thirteen American presidents. 256 classic cartoons, categorized by era and enhanced with accompanying text concerning the relevant issues of the day that the cartoon drew pointed attention to, fill this powerful survey - which is further enhanced by an accompanying DVD of more than 18,000 cartoons (no less than the majority of Herblock's professional work)! From a cartoon of a man crying "Fire!" and trying to put out the Statue of Liberty's torch (in response to the civil liberties crackdown of the Red Scare in 1949), to an image of a naked Nixon using only an image of the globe to cover himself (a twist on "the emperor has no clothes"), to a thief's "getaway care" driven by the Supreme Court representing the metaphorical theft of the 2000 presidential election (which was ultimately decided by a Supreme Court decision), Herblock does not shy away from hot button topics or controversy. A worthy tribute to a truly great cartoonist, Herblock is enthusiastically recommended to public and privately library collections, and to anyone who enjoys political cartoons.

The Sports Shelf

Sports Illustrated: The Golf Book
Roy Blount Jr., foreword
Sports Illustrated
c/o Goldberg McDuffie Communications
444 Madison Ave, #3300, NY, NY 10022
9781603200851 $29.95

Sports Illustrated: The Golf Book is a coffee-table compendium of golf stories from the award-winning magazine Sports Illustrated. The absolutely stunning photography combined with insightful articles makes for an engaging chronology of the sport's highlights over the decades. From golf's finest and most challenging courses, to the golf legends of the past century (including Bobby Jones, Ben Hogan, Sam Snead, Jack Nicklaus, Arnold Palmer, Nancy Lopez, Tiger Woods, Annika Sorenstam, and more), to cherished artifacts and stories highlighting great moments, Sports Illustrated: The Golf Book is a "must-have" compendium for golf fans. Highly recommended.

The Home Improvement Shelf

The Black & Decker Complete Guide to Kitchens
Creative Publishing International
c/o Quayside Publishing Group
33 Commercial Street, Gloucester, MA 01930
9781589234802 $24.99 1-800-328-0590

The Black & Decker Complete Guide to Kitchens walks the reader through a wealth of kitchen-related home improvement projects. From saving money by hooking up your own appliances, to installing kitchen flooring, custom cabinetry, lighting, child-proofing, painting, countertops and cabinet upgrades, and much more, The Black & Decker Complete Guide to Kitchens is packed with step-by-step instructions, each illustrated by a separate color photograph. An excellent how-to resource for anyone interested in better living through home improvement, enhanced with the inclusion of a DVD.

The Needlecraft Shelf

Magnificent Mittens & Socks
Anna Zilboorg, author
Alexis Xenakis, photographer
XRX Books
PO Box 1525, Sioux Falls, SD 57101
9781933064161 $24.95 1-800-722-2558

Fully illustrated with full color photography and easy-to-follow knitting pattern diagrams, Magnificent Mittens & Socks lives up to its title with 42 charted mittens, interchangeable cuff charts, 13 edge finishes for cuffs, 7 embellishments for color and texture, linings, dye recipes for mitten colors, detailed instructions for socks using mitten charts, and more. An excellent resource for knitters of all skill and experience levels, highly recommended.

Designing & Hooking Primitive Rugs
Susie Stephenson, author
Jay T. Stephenson, photographer
Schiffer Publishing Ltd.
4880 Lower Valley Road, Atglen, PA 19310
9780764332883 $14.99

Designing & Hooking Primitive Rugs is a solid, all-around primer to rug hooking in primitive (often pictorial) styles, including step-by-step walkthroughs for basic rug hooking, finishing, and dyeing. The full-color illustrations not only guide the reader through the steps, but also offer a wealth of sample rugs created in tribute to ancient and primitive styles, encouraging the reader to be creative and dream up one's own design. In addition to rugs, hooked wall hangings, clothing, and decorative items are also featured in this excellent, original addition to needlecraft shelves.

The Computer Shelf

Murach's C++ 2008
Prentiss Knowlton
Mike Murach and Associates, Inc.
4340 N. Knoll, Fresno, CA 93722
9781890774547 $52.50

Murach's C++ 2008 is an in-depth training and reference text, designed to help the reader learn C++ faster with Visual Studio and the .NET platform. An object-oriented guide with emphasis on visual C++ and applying the essential .Net classes to develop Windows applications, Murach's C++ 2008 includes extensive instructions and sample code that puts principles into practice. An absolute "must-have" for anyone learning or refining their C++ for Windows programming skills, highly recommended.

The Architecture Shelf

Barbara Linz
H.F. Ullmann
Langenscheidt Publishing Group
PO Box 979, Spring House, PA 19477
9780841616417 $22.99 1-888-773-7979

Eco-Houses is a beautifully illustrated tour of energy-saving architectural design, featuring full-color photography of 40 representative buildings. The tri-lingual text (each paragraph is repeated in English, German, & French) offers insight into the building choices that promote aesthetic harmony as well as energy conservation. An excellent source of ideas enthusiastically recommended as a supplementary source of inspiration for architects everywhere, as well as anyone interested in overseeing the creation of their own cost-conscious, environmentally-friendly home.

The Women's Studies Shelf

Marrying George Clooney
Amy Ferris
Seal Press
c/o Perseus Books Group
1700 Fourth Street, Berkeley, CA 94710
9781580052979, $16.95,

Womanhood can turn out to be unbelievably stressful. "Marrying George Clooney: Confessions from a Midlife Crisis" is a memoir by Amy Ferris. She tells of trying to juggle elements of her life ranging from the material to the fantastical, as she tries to care for her mother, confront her own feelings about menopause and non-existent marriages, and resist panicking about her own health. A fun adventure of what many women face on a day to day basis, "Marrying George Clooney" is a fine and recommended read for any woman who can find the time to read.

Women Lead the Way
Linda Tarr-Whelan
235 Montgomery Street, Suite 650, San Fransisco, CA 94104-2916
9781605091358, $24.95,

Leadership should never be a boys only club. "Women Lead the Way: Your Guide to Stepping Up to Leadership and Changing the World" is a leadership guide encouraging women to take a more involved role in their businesses, a role of leadership. Stating that this not just a feminist push, but instead a real catalyst for change as a higher percentage of women in management means better change for the company, "Women Lead the Way" is a unique guide that demonstrates the power of women in businesses.

The Menopause Book
Pat Wingert & Barbara Kantowitz
Workman Publishing
225 Varick Street, New York, NY 10014
9780761155980, $17.95,

Menopause is a major turning point in a woman's life. "The Menopause Book" is a motivational book filled with information to help newly menopausal women face the array of problems that come with the change of life. From estrogen issues, to the value of exercise, to new changes in the bedroom, and much more. Ideal for any woman concerned about menopause, "The Menopause Book" is a worthy recommendation.

The Science on Women and Science
Christina Hoff Sommers
American Enterprise Institute
1150 Seventeenth Street, NW, Washington, DC 20036
9780844742816, $20.00,

The gender barrier seems to have one last stand in the world of science. "The Science on Women and Science" discusses the lack of women in the physical sciences, where men still hold an overwhelming majority of positions. Offering much social discussion in this field and the idea that there may be more to it than simple social pressures - hard wired biological factors may be involved as well - "The Science on Women and Science" is a fascinating read for any looking into the psychology of science.

The Fiction Shelf

Not Normal, Illinois
Michael Martone, editor
Quarry Books
c/o Indiana University Press
601 N. Morton Street, Bloomington, IN 47404
9780253210227, $22.95,

There's just something about being in the middle of it all. "Not Normal, Illinois: Peculiar Fictions from the Flyover" is a collection of short fiction from many Midwestern writers as they offer their own viewpoints and unique takes on the world through their writing. Thirty three stories bring readers to a very complete and comprehensive set of ideals that is sure to entertain as well as enlighten. "Not Normal, Illinois" is a fine and strongly recommended read for any who want a sampling of mid-western philosophy.

Cursing Columbus
Eve Tal
Cinco Puntos Press
701 Texas Avenue, El Paso, TX 79901
9781933693590, $16.95,

Working to bring one's family to America was the goal of many immigrants in the early twentieth century. "Cursing Columbus" is a follow up to Eve Tal's previous volume, 'Double Crossing', telling the story of Jewish immigrants coming to America. Papa and Raziel have the money to reunite their family, but it won't be as simple as it seems. But the American dream is never as dreamy as people have believed it to be. "Cursing Columbus" is a touching story of family and overcoming the harsh odds of life.

Kristin Bair O'Keeffe
c/o Ohio University Press
19 Circle Drive, The Ridges, Athens, OH 45701
9780804011235, $22.95,

Weakness is hereditary until one develops the strength to break it. "Thirsty" tells the tragic story of Klara, a woman who has lived under the abuse of her father and now her husband. Struggling to keep her sanity, she sees her daughter may continue on the same road she herself followed, and becomes determined to end the cycle of abuse once and for all. "Thirsty" is a moving read of one mother finally having enough, wanting better for her daughter.

Mark Heinz
Livington Press
c/o The University of West Alabama
University of West Alabama, Station 22, Livingston, AL 35470
9781604890365, $16.95,

A true friend doesn't ditch when going gets rough. "Shine" tells of the friendship between a respectable man of society and a moonshiner. Joe Bass forms a strong friendship with Edgar Johnson; the two hit it off fast and quick. But when Edgar's demons begin to catch up with him, Joe is faced with many decisions. "Shine" is a unique and very recommended story of friendship.

The Shadow Riders
Owen C. Irons
Avalon Books
160 Madison Avenue, New York, NY 10016
9780803499614, $23.95,

If you can't beat them, join them and beat them that way. "The Shadow Riders" is a western focusing on a ravaging gang of bandits in Arizona called the Shadow Riders. Tyrone Cannfield, an Arizona Ranger, infiltrates the riders in order to bring them down. A fascinating and intriguing western of the law and the outlaws, "The Shadow Riders" is a surefire treat for those who love westerns.

The Poetry Shelf

How Shadows are Bundled
Anne Valley-Fox
University of New Mexico Press
1 University of New Mexico, Albuquerque, NM, 87131-0001
9780826347817, $21.95,

Many volumes of poetry to her name, Anne Valley-Fox brings her fans another fix with "How Shadows are Bundled". She brings readers more of her trademark writing, which is sure to provide readers with more of what they loved about previous volumes, discussing the hidden feelings everyone harbors. "How Shadows are Bundled" is a fine poetry pick, not to be missed. "Mazurka": Early morning snow flurry melts/within an hour.//During which, Dream Queen, what did you achieve?//I listened to a crow's mazurka/on a pebble roof.

The Burning of the Books
George Szirtes
Bloodaxe Books
c/o DuFour Editions
PO Box 7, Chester Springs, PA 19425
9781852248420, $20.95,

Written by a student of Hungarian literature and witness to the unstable Hungarian state, "The Burning of the Books" is a collection of poetry from George Szirtes offering much insight to the Hungarian people through his work. "The Burning of the Books" is a solid pick to world poetry collections. "Howard Hodgkin Considers a Small Thing But His Own": Darkness frames small things, so I rejoice/in spluttering some colour into life./Do I stay in bed and mope, lament my choice//of partner or pigment? Not my style./See, If I cup this hand the light shines through it/and no amount of moping will undo it.//Or so I say to myself last thing at night/when it is dark, as the blackest dog despair/can find, sheds her silky hair//pretty well everywhere.

Upgraded to Serious
Heather McHugh
Copper Canyon Press
PO Box 271, Port Townsend, WA 98368
9781556593062, $22.00,

With twelve previous volumes to her credit, Heather McHugh is a prolific poet of quality. "Upgraded to Serious" is her newest collection, offering a storm of new insights through her fine and deft verse than will make people laugh as they think. "Upgraded to Serious" is a top pick, especially for fans of her previous volumes. "Myrrha to the Source": O fluent one, O muscle full of hydrogen,/O stuff of grief, whom the Greeks accuse of spoiling souls,//whose destiny is downward,/whose reflecting's up -- I think/I must have come from you.//Just one more cup.

Song of Two Worlds
Alan Lightman
AK Peters
5 Commonwealth Road, Suite 2C, Natick, MA 10760
9781568814636, $24.95,

Created by a man of science and of art, Alan Lightman's work is a unique thing to behold. "Song of Two Worlds" is a collection of poetry from the physicist, as he blends his two disciplines well for a truly fascinating insight into the world around us. With fine verse, "Song of Two Worlds" is a top pick. "44": Afternoon on my terrace, I sit/In the heat, bare chested,/Sipping hot tea. Far off,/The sound of an oud. And then nothing./The air closes, silence. Again,/The faint strings of old,/Muffled bells, drums,/Horn sound of mizmar --/All swallowed in air.

The Social Issues Shelf

Social Change 2.0
David Gershon
High Point
c/o Chelsea Green
1649 Route 28A, West Hurley, New York, 12491
Social Responsibility Solutions (publicity)
234 Heather Lane, Kingston, NY 12401
9780963032775, $27.95,

Change is a natural thing in the course of history, but until now, it has been slow. "Social Change 2.0" offers a new viewpoint to change in the current stance of the world, stating the old way the world adapted to the times was Social Change 1.0, and that the new would should be dubbed Social Change 2.0. With many new ideas and thoughts to the nature of the world today, David Gershon gives readers quite the lesson in the ways of the new world. "Social Change 2.0" is an intriguing and fascinating read that should not be ignored.

The Global Food Crisis
Jennifer Clapp & Marc J. Cohen
Wilfird Laurier University Press
Wilfrid Laurier University, Waterloo, Ontario, Canada, N2L 3C5
9781554581924, $39.95,

With nearly seven billion mouths to feed, is there truly enough to go around? "The Global Food Crisis: Governance Challenges and Opportunities" discusses the problems that the world faces with its food resources and the short supply it can face, primarily in the world's poorest countries. Many thinkers come together and offer differing opinions on how to bring readers ideas that could lead a future where starvation isn't a way of life for so many people. "The Global Food Crisis" is scholarly and highly recommended for social issues collections.

The International Studies Shelf

Which Path to Persia?
Kenneth M. Pollack & Contributors
Brookings Institution Press
1775 Massachusetts, Avenue, NW, Washington, DC 20036
9780815703419, $22.95,

Iran has been a very sensitive subject in recent years. "Which Path to Persia?: Options for a New American Strategy Toward Iran" is a discussion of the United States and its rickety relationship with Iran. With the threat of an extremist and corrupt country with nuclear weapons, the United States must be as gentle as ever, an the Brookings Institute press offers their own ideas and plans for peaceful coexistence between the two countries. "Which Path to Persia?" is a strongly recommended pick for any concerned about Iran.

Partitioning for Peace
Ivan Eland
The Independent Institute
100 Swan Way, Oakland, CA 94621-1428
9781598130256, $15.95,

Invasion is easy. Getting out is the hard part. "Partitioning for Peace: An Exit Strategy for Iraq" offers one man's ideas for America leaving Iraq better than they found it when such an idea sometimes seems impossible. Partitioning is the basis of his idea, and he presents his ideas well. "Partitioning for Peace" is a choice pick for any who want new ideas on the war in Iraq.

Emmanuel Brunet-Jailly
University of Ottawa Press
542 King Edward, Ottawa, ON, Canada, K1N 6N5
9780776606514, $33.00,

What does France do about its border with Germany? "Borderlands: Comparing Border Security in North America and Europe" analyzes border politics throughout the western world and how nations have approached the matters of security differently. From borders which seem to merge into one entity like some areas of France and The Netherlands, to more protected borders like the United States and Mexico, "Borderlands" is an intriguing look at border politics on a wider scope.

The Art Shelf

I Sold Andy Warhol (Too Soon)
Richard Polsky
Other Press LLC
2 Park Avenue, 24th Floor, New York, NY 10016
9781590513378, $23.95,

Art has become a multimillion dollar business. "I Sold Andy Warhol (Too Soon)" is one man's reflections on the world of art and how it has quickly departed from admiring artistic expression to being all about the art on green paper we call money. Jaded, surprised, and disappointed, Richard Polsky tells what can be a sad tale of the commercialization of human creativity. "I Sold Andy Warhol:(Too Soon)" is a fine and recommended read that is well worth considering for art fans critical of the direction of the modern world of art.

The Art of Moving Picture Posters
Rex Schneider & Chris Buchman
Stemmer House
4 White Brook Road, Gilsum, NH 03448
9780880451710, $8.95,

There was a certain charm to the motion picture advertisements of the 1930s. "The Art of Moving Picture Posters" is packed cover to cover with black and white reproductions of some of these posters for study by art students. Intriguing to look at and good for reflection, "The Art of Moving Picture Posters" is a strong choice for fans of the old style of motion picture advertisements.

The Christian Studies Shelf

Charity in Truth
Pope Benedict XVI
Ignatius Press
PO Box 1339, Fort Collins, CO 80522
9781586172800, $14.95

Where does the current Pope stand on the many social problems of the modern world? "Charity in Truth: Caritas in Veritate" is a treatise on current social issues from Pope Benedict XVI. Technology, economics, the free market, charity, and so much more are spoke on, giving much to consider for many Catholics. For any well read follower of the Pope, "Charity in Truth" is a read that should not be missed.

Totally God's 4 Life
Megan Clinton
Harvest House Publishers
990 Owen Loop North, Eugene, Oregon 97402-9173
9780736927604, $10.99,

With so much changing around you, some teenagers turn to God to bring stability in life. "Totally God's 4 Life: A Devotional" is a Christian inspirational guide for teenagers girls who want to give themselves to God and the Christian life, and how to stay true to it through it all. Emphasizing the beauty of God and the power of prayer for teenagers, "Totally God's 4 Life" is a very highly recommended pick for Christian teens.

Daily Readings from the Life of Christ
John MacArthur
Moody Publishers
820 N. LaSalle Boulevard, Chicago, IL 60610
9780802456014, $22.99,

Spirituality is not something that can be ignored and taken up randomly. "Daily Readings from the Life of Christ" is a day by day book that John MacArthur hopes that readers will take as a daily dose of faith. Offering scripture, commentary, and spiritual questions to readers, there is much inspiration to be had. For readers trying to bring more faith into their life, "Daily Readings from the Life of Christ" is a top pick.

Knowing God
J. I. Packer
IVP Books
PO Box 1400, Downers Grove, IL 60515-1426
9780830837397, $18.00,

Closeness to the Lord is one of the many goals of Christianity. "Knowing God: Devotional Journal & One Year Guide" is J. I. Packer's spiritual advisory to help readers attain that closeness to god that so many often desire. Week by week and day by day, Packer gives advice that is sure to motivate and inspire readers to reach for more in their quest to unite with God. "Knowing God" is a fine read for any devoted Christian.

Fascinating People of the Bible
Christopher D. Hudson
Barbour Publishing
PO Box 719, Uhrichville, OH 44683
9781602604544, $9.97,

The people of the Bible are inspiring, and offer those living their lives much to drive them through the day. "Fascinating People of the Bible: Your Inspirational and Entertaining Guide to the Famous, Not-So-Famous, and Infamous Characters of Scripture" is a daily book meant be enjoyed day by day over the course of year, focusing on the many characters of the Bible, from the minor and what they teach us despite being unnamed, to the major and their lasting impact on the world. "Fascinating People of the Bible" is an entertaining and profound read no matter one's faith.

Christianity in Action
Henry Gariepy
Wm B. Eerdmans
2140 Oak Industrial Drive NE, Grand Rapids, MI 49505
9780802848413, $25.00,

Sometimes good just stays around and keeps doing good. "Christianity in Action: The International History of The Salvation Army" tells the story of how the Salvation army became an icon at Christmastime and has become synonymous with charity. Growing from Victorian England to being a force in well over a hundred countries around the world, "Christianity in Action" tells the story of the goodness of people and will inspire readers with how charity can spread throughout the world.

The Religion/Spirituality Shelf

The Revolution from Within
J. Krishnamurti
Hohm Press
PO Box 2501, Prescott, AZ 86302
9781935387053, $19.95,

Most people prove to be slaves to their minds. "The Revolution from Within" is a collection of thoughts and ideas from one of the leading spiritual philosophers of the twentieth century, J. Krishnamurti. Encouraging readers to be more aware of the constant changes in life all around them, and to break free of their mind's dominion over their souls, "The Revolution from Within" will influence and encourage much thought.

World Religions, third edition
Jeffrey Brodd
Saint Mary's Press
702 Terrace Heights, Winona, MN 55987-1318
9780884899976, $24.95,

What people believe is a bedrock of who they are. "World Religions: A Voyage of Discovery" looks the many faiths of the world, ranging from the most primal religions of our prehistoric ancestors, to the gods of the Ancient Greeks and Romans, to modern Christianity and Islam. Profoundly educational with many lessons to learn for many readers, "World Religions" is a top pick for any with curiosity in the religious views of the world.

The Judaic Studies Shelf

A Formula for Proper Living
Abraham J. Twerski
Jewish Lights Publishing
Sunset Farm Offices, Route 4, PO Box 237, Woodstock, VY 05091
9781580234023, $19.99,

There is simple wisdom that applies no matter what one's faith is. "A Formula for Proper Living: Practical Lessons from Life and Torah" looks to what the Torah can teach people in the contemporary age about life and living, even those people who do not subscribe to Judaism. Filled with wisdom from the Torah and its scholars, "A Formula for Proper Living" is a top pick for spirituality and self-help collections.

They Dared Return
Patrick K. O'Donnell
Da Capo
c/o Perseus Book Group
11 Cambridge Center, Cambridge, MA 02142
9780306818004, $26.00,

In the name of what's right, some people will go into certain death. "They Dared Return: The True Story of Jewish Spies Behind the Lines in Nazi Germany" tells the story of a group of Jews who, having escaped the clutches of Hitler's final solution, went back to fight against the Nazi's genocide. These individuals brought a quicker end to the war through their heroism, and Patrick K. O'Donnell tells their story. "They Dared Return" is utterly fascinating and highly recommended.

The World History Shelf

The Hundred Years War III
Jonathan Sumption
University of Pennslyvania Press
3905 Spruce Street, Philadelphia, PA 19104-4011
9780812242232, $45.00,

The bad blood that boils between nations can last generations. "The Hundred Years War III: Divided Houses" is the third volume of the complete and comprehensive coverage of one of Europe's longest and bloodiest sustained conflicts between England and France throughout the fourteenth century. With maps and much discussion over many of the historic events during the twenty four year period from 1369 to 1393 where the leaders were mentally unstable and inexperienced, exacerbating the existing problems of the conflict. "The Hundred Years War III" is a core addition to any European medieval history collection, enthusiastically recommended.

The Quest for the Lost Roman Legions
Tony Clunn
PO Box 4527, El Dorado Hills, CA 95762
9781932714708, $22.95,

The armies of Rome were peerless in their own era. "The Quest for the Lost Roman Legions: Discovering the Varus Battlefield" discusses the historical search for this battlefield that was lost to the centuries. Through Roman coins and historical artifacts, the events of the battle of Varus are uncovered and Tony Clunn tells the story of the search for history. "The Quest for the Lost Roman Legions" is a top pick and is very highly recommended reading for Roman history enthusiasts.

The Self-Help Shelf

When You Lose Someone You Love
Richard Exley
David C. Cook
4050 Lee Vance View, Colorado Springs, CO 80918
9781434764805, $9.99

Grief is a truly powerful thing. "When You Lose Someone You Love: Comfort for Those Who Grieve" is a collection of inspirational and motivational texts from Richard Exley hoping to help those in the grieving process move on and settle their lives when it seems like there can be no tomorrow. Simply presented, "When You Lose Someone You Love" may be the comfort many need after the cruelty of life.

The Education Shelf

The Reading Specialist, second edition
Rita M. Bean
Guilford Press
72 Spring Street, New York, NY 10012
9781606234068, $30.00,

Without reading, everything else becomes harder. "The Reading Specialist: Leadership for the Classroom, School, and Community" is a guide for teachers who are responsible with helping readers of any grade level face their problems with literacy. This second edition emphasizes secondary school problems more thoroughly, and gives many tips on coaching readers. "The Reading Specialist" is a must for any educator who is charged with helping students getting up to the skill they need to succeed in academics.

The Business Shelf

The Design of Business
Roger Martin
Harvard Business Press
60 Harvard Way, Boston, MA 02163
9781422177808, $26.95,

The world moves so fast today that thinking in the present means you're thinking too slow. "The Design of Business: Why Design Thinking is the Next Competitive Advantage" is a business book discussing that in order to be on the top of the game in the modern business world, one must focus on the future instead of the present, the world as it could be instead of how it is. With plenty of sage advice and ideas for the future of business, "The Design Business" is well worth considering for any business which dreams of being ahead of the cutting edge.

Celebrating Failure
Ralpha Heath
Career Press
3 Tice Road, PO Box 687, Franklin Lakes, NJ 07417
9781601630643, $14.99,

Failure isn't that you failed; it's that you were willing to take that risk. "Celebrating Failure: The Power of Taking Risks, Making Mistakes, and Thinking Big" is a different sort of business motivational manual, encouraging entrepreneurs to fail, or at the very least, not be afraid of failure. If you don't fear failure, you are more willing to take risks, and those risks could lead to bigger success. "Celebrating Failure" is a motivational guide with original, yet still practical wisdom.

The Money/Finance Shelf

Inside the Minds of Car Dealers
Ray Lopez
Five Star Publications
PO Box 6698, Chandler, AZ 85246-6698
9781589851566, $15.95,

What makes someone sell you a clunker? "Inside the minds of Car Dealers: How to Buy Your Next Car without Fear" is a guide for readers who seek a psychological edge in dealing with the shifty con artists who go by the more politically correct title of car dealers. Written by a man who has played the devil, he offers much in the way of trying to decipher the thoughts on both sides of the deal and does well in arming his readers in how to get the best deal they can and avoid the toxic ones. "Inside the Minds of Car Dealers" is a must for anyone considering purchasing a new vehicle in the near future.

The Health/Medicine Shelf

The Whole-Body Approach to Osteoporosis
R. Keith McCormick
New Harbinger Publications
5674 Shattuck Avenue, Oakland, CA 94609
9781572245952, $16.95,

The human body is weird, one seemingly unrelated thing may be causing someone pain elsewhere in their body. "The Whole-Body Approach to Osteoporosis: How to Improve Your Bone Strength and Reduce Your Fracture Risk" is a guide for readers who want to better fight off osteoporosis through improved general fitness and health. A more healthy body will help fight off the aches and pains of a particular part, and R. Keith McCormick equips readers with the knowledge they need to combat it.

The Metaphysical Studies Shelf

The Witches' Alamanac Spring 2010 - Spring 2011
Witches' Almanac Ltd.
PO Box 1292, Newport, RI 02840-9998
Red Wheel, Weiser, Conari (distributor)
65 Parker Street, Suite 7, Newburyport, MA 01950
9780977370375, $11.95,

Even if you don't believe in Wicca, the wisdom of witches is still useful. "The Witches' Almanac Spring 2010 - Spring 2011" is another edition of the famed series, filled cover to cover with articles of interest, giving outlooks for horoscopes, and packed with recipes and other fascinating information. "The Witches' Almanac" is an ideal choice for any would be witch who wants insight into a little magic of their own.

The Pets/Wildlife Shelf

Records of North American Elk
Jack Reneau & Howard P. Monsour, Jr., editor
Boone & Crockett Club
205 Station Drive, Missoula, MT 59801
9780940864641, $24.95,

Elk has been a game animal of choice for many American hunters for decades. "Records of North American Elk" is a complete and comprehensive guide to the North American Elk, going over the elk's presence in the United States and Canada, and the presence of the Elk in each state and province. Drawing on the minds of many wildlife writers, "Records of the North American Elk" is perfect for any wildlife enthusiast or hunter, and for community library wildlife collections.

The Philosophy Shelf

Led Zeppelin & Philosophy
Scott Calef, editor
Open Court
70 East Lake Street, Suite 300, Chicago, IL 60601
9780812696721, $19.95,

There have been few bands with the widest arrange of influences than Led Zeppelin. "Led Zeppelin & Philosophy: All Will Be Revealed" looks at the famous group's music and dissects it to the messages that lie beneath the songs. Blending philosophy, psychology, and music, these writers offer new and fresh opinions on the music of Led Zeppelin, and will open fans eyes to what they haven't seen before despite it being right under their nose. "Led Zeppelin & Philosophy" is a choice pick for any Zeppelin fan.

The Psychology Shelf

Transition of Youth & Young Adults with Emotional or Behavioral Difficulties
Hewitt B. Clark & Deanne K. Unruh
Paul H. Brookes Publishing Co.
PO Box 10624, Baltimore, MD 21285-0624
9781557669636, $34.95,

Growing up is hard enough already, but the problems are exacerbated by mental health issues. "Transition of Youth & Young Adults with Emotional or Behavioral Difficulties" is a psychological guide to those mentoring these individuals with special needs as they try to become fully functioning adults in society but are faced with many problems due to their condition. From switching to pediatric to standard mental health services, funding, and other strategies, "Transition of Youth & Youth Adults with Emotional or Behavioral Difficulties" is a core addition to any pediatric psychology collection.

The Christmas Shelf

A Christmas Ride
Edie Hand
Parkway Publishers
225 Ira Harmon Rd, Vilas, NC 28692
9781933251684, $11.95,

The bonds of family are a miracle unto themselves. "A Christmas Ride: The Miracle of Lights: A Gift of Family" is a touching story about a family who finds the true meaning of it all through a tree and the lights that shine on Christmas Day. A story of family shattering and reuniting, "A Christmas Ride" will give hope and show readers of the true meanings of Christmas.

A Christmas Blizzard
Garrison Keillor, author and narrator
Highbridge Audio Books
201 Sixth Street SE, Suite 220, Minneapolis, MN 55414 1-800-755-8532
9781598879278 $26.95,

A Christmas Blizzard is the unabridged audiobook adaptation of radio personality Garrison Keillor's earthy, down-home Midwest novel about two people living in a 55th-floor ten-room apartment overlooking Chicago. James Sparrow dreads the Christmas season, while Joyce Sparrow eagerly anticipates it but is terribly sick with stomach flu. A phone call from James' hometown sends him into the depths of a grand blizzard to see his dying Uncle Earl for the last time. Stranded by the storm, James must confront the pressure of difficult memories as he survives in a fishing shack on the ice of Lake Winnesissebigosh. Three figures teach him a little bit more about the enigma that is life - a wolf, the Big-Hair Lady, and a Chinese wise man from the Inner Sunset. It is at the darkest hour that he receives Mrs. Sparrow's most beautiful Christmas gift, and his life will never be the same. An endearing story, smoothly read by Keillor himself, that wonderfully embodies the spirit of the Christmas season. Highly recommended. 5 CDs, 5 hours.

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

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