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Small Press Bookwatch

Volume 6, Number 4 April 2007 Home | SPBW Index

Table of Contents

Reviewer's Choice Business Shelf Metaphysical Studies Shelf
Fiction Shelf Psychology Shelf Poetry Shelf
Christian Studies Shelf Jobs/Careers Shelf Health/Medicine Shelf
Self-Help Shelf Fantasy/SciFi Shelf Money/Finance Shelf
Education Shelf Biography Shelf Pets/Wildlife Shelf
Black Studies Shelf Sports Shelf American History Shelf
Literary Shelf    


Reviewer's Choice

How to Lie with Charts
Gerald Everett Jones
LaPuerta
2222 Sixth St., Unit D, Santa Monica 90405-2486
1419651439 $23.99 www.lapuerta.tv

Business, technology, and web development expert Gerald Everett Jones presents an updated second edition of How to Lie with Charts, a must-read for everyone in the information age. How to Lie with Charts is a folksy-toned, fun-to-read guide to how graphs, charts, tables, and other means of presenting statistical data can be effectively used to mislead. How to Lie with Charts is therefore inordinately valuable to anyone trying to make sense of news stories, business presentations, research data, or any other gathering of information presented in visual form, as it opens the reader's eyes to tips, tricks, and techniques commonly used to give false impressions. An utterly invaluable educational and self-teaching tool that is absolutely vital to staying abreast of the information age.


The Business Shelf

Loan Financing Guide For Small Business Owners
D. Neil Berdiev
Small Business Empowerment
PO Box 21, Arlington, MA 02476
0977411702, $27.95 www.loanfinancingguide.com

In "Loan Financing Guide For Small Business Owners", investment and brokerage expert D. Neil Berdiev draws upon his many years of experience working with commercial lending institutions, writing as a columnist for 'Inc.com' and 'Good News Network', and other professional publications including the 'risk Management Association Journal' to lay out simple, accessible, step-by-step instructions that will enable small business owners and entrepreneurs through the process of loan financing. This 177-page compendium of advice and information will show the reader how to 'beat' the lending system, how to provide lending institutions with correct and timely information, how to ensure loan repayment and develop mutually beneficial lending relationships, and even how companies can ultimately succeed even if they fail to obtain a loan. "Loan Financing Guide For Small Business Owners" is highly recommended and invaluable reading that will prove as valuable to novice businessmen as it is accessible to the non-specialist general reader with an interest in someday obtaining a loan for their own future enterprise.

Stand Out From the Crowd
Jay Lipe
Kaplan Publishing
c/o Emerge Marketing
4315 Aldrich Ave. S, Minneapolis, MN 55409
1419523007 $24.95 www.kaplanpublishing.com www.emergemarketing.com

Advertising and branding professional Jay Lipe puts his 20 years of experience on paper in Stand Out From the Crowd: Secrets to Crafting A Winning Company Identity, a guide especially for small-business owners, entrepreneurs, and marketers. Offering a plethora of tips, tricks, and techniques to build a reputation and make a long-lasting impression upon clientele, Stand Out From the Crowd covers how to properly craft a mission statement, create an intense focus on one's target markets, deliver world-class service, determine a properly balanced fee for services rendered, write copy that motivates people to buy, use taglines, logos, and colors to maximum effect, and much more. Enthusiastically recommended especially for anyone involved in establishing a company's brand and identity.

One Circle
Maureen Fitzgerald Ph.D.
CenterPoint
PO Box 72030, Vancouver, BC Canada
0973245115 $14.95 www.centerpointinc.com

Written by lawyer and mediator Maureen Fitzgerald Ph.D., One Circle: Tapping the Power of Those Who Know Your Best is a guide especially for businesspeople but useful to people from all walks of life, concerning how to create a peer-mentoring group ideal for exchanging advice, setting and achieving goals, developing trust, and offering support to meet changing needs. Chapters discuss solid techniques for finding the right members, running the first six meetings, creating a safe place for risk taking, honing one's speaking and listening skills, and much more. Written in plain terms in order to be accessible to readers of all backgrounds, One Circle is especially recommended for anyone charged with the responsibility of running meetings, focus groups, and other organized goal-oriented assemblies.

Happy About Apartment Management
Robert W. Klag, M. Gary Wong, Steven M. McDonald, & Gemma G. Lim
HappyAbout.info
21265 Stevens Creek Blvd., Suite 205, Cupertino, CA 95014
160005031X $19.95 www.happyabout.info www.westlake-realty.com

Written by expert real estate professionals, Happy About Apartment Management: 30 Years of Expert Tips and Advice on Multifamily Property Management is a solid guide to rental property management, written in plain terms and thoroughly accessible to readers of all backgrounds. Chapters don't ramble - each boils down its key concepts into a handful of easily grasped bullet points. From maintaining occupancy in a buyer's market, to avoiding common lawsuits, to tips for efficient risk management and much more, Happy About Apartment Management is an absolute "must-have" for anyone owning an apartment or contemplating managing one. "Essentially, you want your property to have a reputation for being tough in the area of on-time rent payments. A reputation for laxity attracts bad credit risks. The easier you are on past-due accounts, the more of them you'll have."


The Metaphysical Studies Shelf

Healing Yourself the Cosmic Way
Carol K. Anthony and Hanna Moog
Anthony Publishing Company, Inc.
206 Gleasondale Road, Stow, MA 01775
1890764035 $22.95 www.ichingoracle.com

Written by Carol K. Anthony and Hanna Moog, co-founders of the I Ching Institute, Healing Yourself the Cosmic Way: Based on the I Ching is an in-depth, self-help guide to improving one's well-being and recovering from physical and emotional pain through ancient Chinese wisdom in the need to balance body and mind, as well as identifying various influences on the consciousness of the psyche. Healing Yourself the Cosmic Way is not an I Ching manual or primer per se, but rather walks the reader through valuable truths that understanding the I Ching can help communicate. Chapters cover the role of ego in illness, understanding infections, pain as a messenger, causes of regressions and hindrance to healing, the causes of susceptibility to illness, and much more. A welcome addition to holistic healing and alternative medicine shelves. "Guilt, if not deprogrammed, greatly diminishes our self-healing abilities. It therefore keeps us ill for longer periods of time than necessary. Guilt also reinstalls the things we have deprogrammed by making us fear that if we turn our backs on our time-honored beliefs, we will become guilty."

Reincarnation Cards: Awakening Far Memory
John Knowles & Linda Leblanc
Ger Maa Publishers - Cyprus
c/o Lucky Press
126 South Maple Street, Lancaster, OH 43130
9963667007, $34.95 www.ReincarnationCards.com www.luckypress.com

Buddhism is founded upon a belief in reincarnation and that past lives influence how one is born into their present life. Past life regression is a metaphysical belief that we can access our past lives. Now Ger Maa Publishers of Cypress have published a book-and-card set "Reincarnation Cards: Awakening Far Memory", the collaborative effort of John Knowles and Linda Leblanc, to help by providing tools that anyone seeking to recover forgotten memories of previous incarnations and past life experiences. The informative hardcover book and the sixty-one full-color illustrated cards are specifically designed to evoke intuitive responses in a personal quest for past life access. Now distributed by Lucky Press for the United States, "Reincarnation Cards: Awakening Far Memory" is a unique and enthusiastically recommended addition to Metaphysical Studies reference collections in general, and the personal libraries of non-specialist general readers with an interest in reincarnation and past life therapies.


The Fiction Shelf

Re'enev
Mike Maranhas
Pink Granite Productions
68 Phillips Avenue, Suite 336, Rockport, MA 01966-1143
0977780996, $14.95 www.pinkgraniteproductions.com

A superbly crafted mainstream novel by Mike Maranhas, "Re'enev" deftly combines the elements of romance, suspense, mystery, as well as the vulnerability of human life in general, and marital love in particular. Luke and Meesha Ferless were college sweethearts and are now in their thirties when they go hiking together in a rain forest while vacationing on an idyllic island called Re'enev. The underlying purpose of their trip is more than just an ordinary vacation, it is to heal the damage done to their marriage because of Luke's betrayal an infidelity that led Meesha to try and take her own life. As they hike into the depths of the rainforest the denseness of the vegetation separates them briefly and that's when Meesha disappears. Luke is compelled to find her, but the elements are against him and the only ally he has in his quest could also be his enemy. Highly recommended reading and a welcome addition to community library contemporary fiction collections, "Re'enev" is an original, imaginative, compelling, and accomplished work of engaging, at times almost lyrical storytelling.

Acts of the Saints
K.A. Schuster
Samhain Publishing. Ltd
2932 Ross Clark Circle, #384, Dothan, AL 36301
1599983354 $13.50 www.samhainpublishing.com

Written by Wisconsin native K.A. Schuster, Acts of the Saints is a dark, gritty novel that could be interpreted as the philosophical inverse of the popular "Left Behind" series. Set in an America dangerously close to the one we live in today, Acts of the Saints tells how an ruthless, ultraconservative, politically powerful religious coalition has taken control of America, crushing cherished rights and freedoms, and transforming the nation into a theocracy as cruel and unforgiving as any within the Islamic world. Two ordinary citizens, a divorced woman and her alcoholic former parish priest, set out to find the coalition's secret center of power, the Citadel, amassing whatever information they can by following the "Devil's Railroad" from one resistance group to another. Ruthless vigilante groups menace their every move, and perhaps worst of all, the mysterious Summoner of the coalition has a deadly End Times drama locked in his head that he believes God has relayed to him in a series of visions. Acts of the Saints contains some graphic language and moderate violence in its description of America turned dystopia; its gritty exploration into the authoritarian stranglehold of religious fundamentalism at its most extreme is harrowing to behold.

Banker's Holiday
Gary Clemenceau
Cold Steel Press
1288 Columbus Ave., Suite 282, San Francisco, CA 94133
0978718895 $28.00

Screenwriter, artist, and corporate America survivor Gary Clemenceau presents Banker's Holiday: A Novel of Fiscal Irregularity, an novel of intrigue that peers deep into the dry, ofttimes bleak world of workaholic financier C. Stillman Fuller. Startled by the sudden realization that his parasitic, brooding zombies of senior management have become - well, parasitic, brooding zombies, and he is on the verge of becoming one of them. Fleeing the soul-stealing corporation, and oddly harassed by a thousand-foot Nixon, he crosses the country in an old pick-up and disguises himself as a janitor. Part satire, part borderline fantasy, part vivid metaphor for mid-life crisis in individual humans and capitalism as a whole, Banker's Holiday is a zesty, cutting-edge sardonic treat from beginning to end.

Louisiana Burn
Carl T. Smith
River City Publishing
1719 Mulberry St., Montgomery, AL 36106
1579660665 $24.95

Award-finalist writer Carl T. Smith presents Louisiana Burn, a dark novel following the continued adventures of Sam Larken, former environmental law enforcement officer and ex-con. Though Larken is highly familiar with violence, he is content to remain amid the relative quietude of his South Carolina home - until his erstwhile lover and federal officer Karen Chaney cajoles him away. Manipulated into an investigation concerning Thornton Hunnycut, the man who unjustly sent Sam to prison twelve years ago and who has become a potential candidate for the vice presidency, Sam must delve into Louisiana's seamy underbelly, even though he is forbidden by his release agreement to return to the state. A suspenseful novel of lies, deception, and revenge, Louisiana Burn irresistibly draws the reader in and does not let go until the end. Also highly recommended is the first Sam Larken novel, "Lowcountry Boil".

The Rising Shore Roanoke
Deborah Homsher
Blue Hull Press
225 Warren Place, Ithaca, NY
0979051606 $11.99 www.risingshoreroanoke.com

The Rising Shore Roanoke is a novel of the famous lost American colony, from the perspectives of two women who sailed from London to the shore of Virginia's wilderness in 1587. The adventurous daughter of the expedition's leader chafes at the societal restraints placed upon her gender, while her female servant dares to walk an independent path among the struggling colony. Their journey will take them through the Caribbean and climax in the Outer Banks region of North America. An enthralling saga of a colony presumed doomed, due to historical record of its founder's return from a three-year supply trip to find nothing left of the settlement except the word "Croatoan" carved on a post.

Stone Dance
Jamie Johnson
JamesCafe.com
5848 Cleon Avenue, North Hollywood, CA 91601
0978876776 $14.95 www.jamescafe.com

Stone Dance is a tongue-in-cheek parable that humorously parodies modern current events. When a terrible act of arson kills twelve innocent people in the town of Good, the infuriated residents demand immediate action - and all evidence points to Abu Omar's evil town of Revil as the instigator. Town leader Josh Prescott, Assistant Leader Bob Kane, and the Good Town Council vote to deprive Abu Omar of his terrible murdertorcher weaponry in the superstone-rich town of Revil - but shady circumstances lead some Good residents to question whether the official party line about the fire is the whole truth. What really happened? Could the fire and its repercussions truly be about establishing a "New County Order?" A rollicking funny ride from cover to cover. "While hunting ducks one day with several friends, something in Bob Kane's mind snapped... In a fit of drunken rage, after a full day of chugging vodka straight from the bottle, a bloodthirsty Bob Kane savagely turned his shotgun on the only living beings in his sights - his best friends. Six of his fellow hunters died on the spot, slain by their friend's insane need to draw blood on a daily basis... Having been responsible for the deaths of thousands of human beings during his lifetime and gotten away with it, Bob Kane had no reason to feel these murders would be any different."

Power of the Scepter
Terry L. Krohn
Axiom House
PO Box 2901, Fairfax, Virginia 22031
0976023725 $25.95 www.axiomhouse.com

The exciting sequel to "Eye of the Pyramid", Power of the Scepter is a thrilling novel following a contemporary physicist, Dr. Paul Malone, who discovers secret artifacts with immense power - capable of remote viewing and much more. Their power is coveted by the utterly ruthless Society, whose misdeeds span two millennia from causing the death of Christ to sponsoring Adolf Hitler. The Society sends a psychotic, murderous, genetically created mutant beast to retrieve what is theirs. Packed cover to cover with suspense, mysteries, and intrigue, Power of the Scepter is an enthralling and at times frightening read from cover to cover, not to be missed.

The Fish Catcher
David Carter
TrackerDog Media
118 Ringwood Road, Walkford, Christchurch, Dorset BH23 5RF
1847539300 $16.25 www.thefishcatcher.co.uk

Written by David Carter, The Fish Catcher is a novel for adults and older children set in 1941, when London was under persistent blitz assault from the Nazis. Young Mary Fissleborough resists being sent to the country for her safety at first, but eventually has to leave the ravaged city to Wolfdale Hall in the hills, along with her sisters and an abandoned boy named Billy. Wolfdale Hall has its own share of unusual mysteries - why is the front bedroom always locked? Who is the stranger Oliver Tresco spotted in the hall? Where is the daughter, Cicely, who no one has ever laid eyes on? Could there be danger for the refugee children at Wolfdale? At times suspenseful, at times poignant, The Fish Catcher is an atmospheric mystery with a hint of adventure.

The Stratford Devil
Claude Clayton Smith
Pocahontas Press, Inc.
PO Box F, Blacksburg, VA 24063-1020
9780926487239 $16.95 www.pocohontaspress.com

The Stratford Devil is a haunting historical fiction novel based on a true incident. In 1651, nearly half a century before the notorious witch trials in Salem, Goody Basset became the second woman in Connecticut charged with witchcraft, and was hanged for her alleged crime. The Stratford Devil is the tale of a strong-willed woman whose independent spirit is at odds with strict Puritan society, and the one event that set in motion a cycling chain of consequences leading to her destruction. Much like Arthur Miller's classic play "The Crucible", The Stratford Devil is a powerful allegory for the perils of religious fundamentalism and authoritarianism gone awry. Highly recommended.

Then Came Faith
Louise M. Gouge
Emerald Pointe Books
PO Box 35327, Tulsa, OK 74153-0327
097851372X $14.99

Road to Romance Reviewer's Choice Award-winning author Louise M. Gouge presents Then Came Faith, a historical romance novel set in the aftermath of the devastating American Civil War. Andre burns with the desire for revenge to the North, after what they did to his family; Juliana wants to help the South heal and repent of its transgression of treating human beings as property. When they meet, they feel a strong attraction, yet their dramatically different values and beliefs set them at odds. Yet despite his all-too-frequent conflicts with Juliana, Andre is impressed by her courage and tenacity. From three former slaves, Andre learns of a hidden secret in his family's past that brings him to confront his own views on the value of human life. An enthralling, at times passionate, at times somber tale about learning to become aware of and set aside personal prejudices.

Still the Monkey
Alivia C. Tagliaferri
Ironcutter Media, LLC
4600 Benedict Drive, Suite 203, Sterling, Virginia 20164
0978841735 $18.95 www.ironcuttermedia.com

Author Alivia C. Tagliaferri became inspired to write Still the Monkey: What Happens to Warriors After War after she visited the Walter Reed Medical Center in the summer of 2003, and saw firsthand the casualties of the War on Terror. Her later interview with a former Marine and Vietnam Veteran with post-traumatic stress disorder helped cement her determination to express the devastating toll of war. Still the Monkey is a historical fiction novel about a Vietnam veteran plagued with pain and sickness, and his fateful meeting with an Iraq veteran who lost both his legs. For ten days inside the walls of Walter Reed's Monologue House, the two of them begin a painful yet ultimately cathartic progression toward healing and learning to live again, one day at a time. A poignant and powerful novel, written out of the deepest respect and admiration for the men and women who put their lives on the line for the sake of their nation.

Death on the Learning Curve
Pierce Scranton, MD
Elite Books
10 Hop Ranch Court, Santa Rosa, CA 95403
1600700144 $24.95 www.deathonthelearningcurve.com

Written by Pierce Scranton, MD, Death on the Learning Curve is a novel based on explicitly real-life quandaries that result from the sheer complexity of medical cases and difficulties involved in learning how to practice medicine - with the result that patients all too often become casualties due to the mistakes of inexperienced interns. Death on the Learning Curve is medical drama grounded in true events, divided into vignettes within each chapter that are in turn based upon the author's first year internship in a busy teaching hospital. From clashes of ego and personality, to the conflict that can result when book training of interns contradicts the personal experience of residents, to ethical quandaries, to incidents of outright misconduct and criminality, Death on the Learning Curve has it all. An utterly enthralling novel, sure to offer keen - if at times frightening - insights into how modern medical teaching hospitals really work.

Jesus in Love
Kittredge Cherry
AndroGyne Press
1700 Shattuck Ave., Berkeley, CA 94709
1933993189 $18.95 www.androgynepress.com

Written by lesbian Christian minister Kittredge Cherry, Jesus in Love is a novel that explores a controversial premise - what if Jesus Christ, the legendary Prince of Peace, had been a queer man? How would have felt, how would he have coped with identifying his real self as both male and female, how would he have connected with his beloved disciple John, Mary Magdalene, and the multi-gendered Holy Spirit? Narrated from Christ's first person perspective, Jesus in Love is not intended to disrespect religious or spiritual beliefs, or advance political agendas, but rather to explore humanity. In the introduction, Cherry states "People ask why I wrote Jesus in Love. The reason is that I love Jesus and writing about him healed me... I wrote about a sexual Jesus because human beings are sexual, and he is bisexual-transgender because I did not want to limit Christ's sexuality to a single approach. Christ seemed to reveal this aspect of his all-encompassing self to me, not as historical fact, but as a spiritual truth." A sensitive and thoughtful perspective; Jesus in Love is emphatically not a fornication-laden or guilty pleasure novel, but rather a spiritual one that dares to deal with sexual aspects, and embodies the essence of peace, tolerance, and compassion that are all ideals cherished in the name of the Prince of Peace.

Across the Purple Divide
Harold G. Ross
Ag Press
1531 Yuma, Manhattan, KS 66502
0971544026 $15.95

Across the Purple Divide is the sixth historical western novel by construction industry professional Harold G. Ross. Set in 1885-1892 and told in first person, Across the Purple Divide follows its protagonist as he ventured into unknown and sometimes hostile territory to carve out a better life for himself. In addition to seemingly endless hard-work, the ruthless threat of swindlers, hostage-takers, and thuggish outlaws seeking to forcibly overtake a family ranch as well as the family itself is a harrowing menace, in this action-packed story of courage and learning to summon grace under pressure. A smoothly written, exciting tale of frontier-taming adventure.

The Horse With The Golden Mane
Russell A. Vassallo
Krazy Duck Productions
PO Box 105, Danville, KY 40422
Lucky Press (distributor)
126 South Maple Street, Lancaster, OH 43130
097767391X, $18.00 www.KrazyDuck.com www.luckypress.com

Based on true events, "The Horse With The Golden Mane: Stories of Adventure, Mystery And Romance" is a compilation of three thoroughly entertaining and carefully crafted short stories by Russell A. Vassallo and includes 'Eric', 'Taj', and the title piece, 'The Horse With The Golden Mane'. A very special treat for the reader is Vassallo's introduction 'When We Are Done' and the addition of a charming 'Afterword' at the end. 'Eric' is based on the experiences of Sol, a man who survived internment in a Nazi death camp and came to America where he befriended a Doberman pincher the very breed of dog the Germans used to hunt down and attack Jewish prisoners. 'Taj' is a story of the bond that can develop between a man and a horse, and how this relationship can help to mend broken families. The loss of a beloved horse and the pursuant search and recovery effort at the hands of as skilled an author as Vassallo makes for truly riveting reading. 'The Horse With The Golden Mane' again addresses how rescuing an abused and spirited horse can heal a man whose life is complicated by a search for a missing wife whom he loves to the point of distraction. Original, compelling, entertaining, and thought-provoking, "The Horse With The Golden mane: Stories of Adventure, Mystery And Romance" is highly recommended and rewarding reading for anyone who has a deep regard for how an affection for our animals can influence us and help us in our darkest hours.

Mutti's War
M.J. Brett
Blue Harmony Press
528 Southern Cross Dr., Colorado Springs, CO 80906
0974886904 $12.00

Journalism and literature teacher M.J. Brett presents Mutti's War, a historical novel based on the true events in the life of a German mother forced to smuggle her three small boys out of East Prussia when the Russians surrounded it in 1944. Her transformation from a privileged German wife and mother who unquestioningly trusted her husband to make all decisions for the family to a courageous survivor risking all in a trek across war-torn Europe to keep herself and her children alive and find her missing husband is told with fluid dialogue and heart-rending detail. A vivid, unforgettable story of courage and determination.


The Psychology Shelf

Hidden in Plain Sight
Barry Grosskopf, MD
VanderWyk & Burnham
PO Box 2789, Acton, MA 01720-6789
1889242292 $16.95 www.vandb.com

Psychiatrist Barry Grosskopf draws upon his years of experience and his patient histories in Hidden in Plain Sight: Getting to the Bottom of Puzzling Emotions, a guide to understanding how powerful emotions and emotional responses can be formed, why and how trauma ranging from addiction or sexual abuse to PTSD can be spread intergenerationally, how intimate relationships such as marriage can further the healing process, and why it is important to have compassion and understanding for one's parents, no matter how atrociously they have behaved, before one can effectively and consciously embrace one's own healing ability. Written in plain terms for readers of all backgrounds, Hidden in Plain Sight is a highly informed and informative look at how powerful emotional responses affect the biological wiring of the human brain and nervous system, particularly in the case of childhood (or even infancy) incidents leaving a lasting imprint, with useful strategies for learning to adjust to and cope with the fallout from trauma or abuse. Highly recommended.

Life in Color
Rodrigo Munoz, MD, Annelle Primm, MD, Jambur Ananth, MD, & Pedro Ruiz, MD
Hilton Publishing Company, Inc.
1630 45th St., Suite 103, Munster, IN 46321
0974314498 $35.00 www.hiltonpub.com

Written by Rodrigo Munoz, MD, Annelle Primm, MD, Jambur Ananth, MD, and Pedro Ruiz, MD, Life in Color: Culture in American Psychiatry is a guide especially for students and the professionals in the psychiatric field whose patients may come from a diverse range of cultural backgrounds. Every patient is an individual, of course, but most individuals are heavily affected by their own cultural beliefs, biases, and teachings. What is considered normative may be arbitrary, or possibly even factually incorrect, for different cultures, yet the psychiatrist needs to be aware of these norms in order to better be able to understand and help the patient. Chapters discuss taking cultural influences into account when dealing with major depression, other forms of depression, schizophrenia and other psychoses, psychopharmacology, and much more. Enthusiastically recommended for college libraries, psychiatric reference shelves, and as a supplementary resource for student and practicing psychiatrists.


The Poetry Shelf

The Drunken Boat & Other Poems From the French of Arthur Rimbaud
Erice Greinke, translator
Presa Press
PO Box 792, Rockford, MI 49341
0977252477 $15.95 www.presapress.com

The Drunken Boat & Other Poems From the French of Arthur Rimbaud is a bilingual collection of Rimbaud's evocative poetry. Each verse is both in the original French and an American English translation skillfully rendered by widely published poet Eric Greinke. The poems are brief, yet flower with sparking beauty, embodying the human yearning for freedom and the poet's struggle to release himself from convention. A wondrous collection, featuring verses that beg to be read aloud in either tongue. "The Star": The star cried like a rose in your listening heart, / & white infinity dripped from your neck to your hips. // The sea turned to rust on your bright red breasts / & mankind drained black blood on your omnipotent thighs.

On The Tongue
Jeff Mann
Gival Press
PO Box 3812, Arlington, Va 22203
1928589359, $15.00 www.givalpress.com

Jeff Mann is an accomplished man of letters whose books of poetry, his novella, and his impressive memoir, have won acclaim and awards. His latest volume of poetry, "On The Tongue" documents and examples his abilities as a wordsmith in evoking images, emotions, and insights into a kind of theatre of the mind experience for his readers. "On The Tongue" is an excellent introduction to the work of Jeff Mann and will motivate those new to his poetry and prose into seeking out his earlier works. 'Peace': Late February, late morning/sunlight pours over the bed//benedictions, clover honey/on a communion wafer.//You sprawl on your belly now, beard buried in the pillow.//I am too happy to sleep.//Across your back, currents of hair,/the long wave of water weeds/where peat-dark river rushes/into Sligo Bay. Is this peace?//To study the world and know/I would change nothing. Special Note: Also highly recommended for poetry enthusiasts and published by Gival Press is Paul Goldman's "The Great Canopy" (1928589316, $15.00) which won the Gival Press Poetry Award.

Poem of the Deep Song
Federico Garcia Lorca
Ralph Angel, translator
Sarabande Books
2234 Dundee Road, Suite 200, Louisville, KY 40205
1932511407 $13.95 www.sarabandebooks.org 1-800-283-3572

Poem of the Deep Song is a bilingual edition of the epic poem inspired by the music and culture of Andalusian Gypsies, penned by acclaimed Spanish artist and musician Federico Garcia Lorca (1898-1936) and skillfully translated into English by award-winning poet Ralph Angel. Consisting of a diversity of impressions originally meant to be sung, not with overly mellifluous tone but rather in a deep, primal cry, Poem of the Deep Song evokes passion, vibrancy, and life undimmed by the turn of almost a century. "De Profundis": A hundred lovers / sleep forever / beneath this dry land. / Andalusia, / long, red-colored roads. / Cordoba, green olive trees, / where a hundred crosses / are placed in their memory. / A hundred lovers / sleep forever.

Renata & Other Poems
Renata Pallottini
Host Publications
1000 East 7th Street, Suite 201, Austin, TX 78702
0924047275, $15.00 www.hotpublications.com

Ably translated from Portugese into K. David Jackson (a professor at Yale University specializing in Portuguese and Brazilian Literature), the highly acclaimed and recommended verse of Brazillian poety Renata Pallottini is now available to what is certain to be an appreciative American readership in a bi-lingual format with "Renata & Other Poems". Pallotini's uniquely crafted poetry reflects life's common contradictions and the balances between such universal experiences lies, truth, illusions, frustrations, pain, pleasure, life and death all with a very special Brazilian flair for language-driven imagery. 'I Don't Know Anything': I don't know anything/I don't understand anything/and I will go on without having learned/anything except the lessons of my own anguish.//Meanwhile,/from this dagger's struggle taking place within me/I keep saving the stained sheets/up to the day before the end of everything/when I will have to expose the maps of this journey to sunlight.

Carnal World
Terri Witek
Story Line Press, Inc.
PO Box 1240, Ashland, OR 97520-0055
Sullivan Creative Writing Program, Stetson University, Department of English
1586540491 $14.00 www.storylinepress.com

Written by Terri Witek (Art and Melissa Sullivan Chair in Creative Writing, Stetson University), Carnal World is an anthology of brief, free-verse poems. A common binding theme is "ekphrasis", or poems about paintings; Carnal World delves into the hidden secrets behind the figures who pose gracefully or poorly for the artist's canvas. An alternately thoughtful and mischievous experience. "Lady Ida Sitwell": Who but herself can say for certain / that any woman is a virgin? / Light-fingered servants, vendors, doctors, / undertakers, weathermongers - / most trades depend on speculation. // When I was matched at seventeen / my husband-to-be went mad for gardens. / If a drone, May-dazed, overspends on nectar, / who but himself can say for certain? // And if under that sky (bluebells suspended) / a glimmer of easy seedlings quickens / as if warmed between ancestral covers / and every bumbler turns whoremonger / for whom will the pink-tipped lily open? / Who but herself can say for certain?


The Christian Studies Shelf

Teach Me, Lord, to Dance
George W. Pettingell
Frankie Dove Publishing
PO Box 3875, Federal Way, Washington 98063
0978648706 $13.99

Written by radio interviewer George W. Pettingell, Teach Me, Lord, to Dance: An Interview With Jesus is a one-of-a-kind book - it relates a conversation with Jesus Christ. Christ's words flow fluidly in Modern English, yet His message as presented is drawn directly from scriptural texts; the specific texts are cited at the close of the compendium. In the process of reading Christ's reconstructed and interpreted words, the reader is sure to be uplifted by the humility, majesty, sacrifice, and love of the Savior. Highly recommended. "'You appeared to a lot of people after your resurrection, didn't you?' 'I appeared to the Eleven several times. I walked and talked with two other disciples for several hours along the road from Jerusalem to the town of Emmaus. I appeared to my half brothers James and Judas. I appeared to a crowd of more than 500 of my followers in Galilee.'"


The Jobs/Careers Shelf

Self-Management for Actors
Bonnie Gillespie
Cricket Feet Publishing
PO Box 1417, Hollywood, CA 90028
0972301984 $19.95 http://cricket feet.com/smfa

Written by casting director, career consultant, and former actor Bonnie Gillespie, Self-Management for Actors: Getting Down to (Show) Business is a straightforward guide to managing one's own career as an actor, whether for more control over one's offers, save money, or other reasons. Now in an updated second edition, Self-Management for Actors covers the necessary mindset to be one's own acting career management; the preparations and training that will be useful; how to smoothly interact with other people in the trade such as agents, casting office personnel, and publicists; how to fit in time and energy for "survival jobs" that keep a steady income; and much more. Now in a newly updated and expanded second edition, Self-Management for actors is strongly recommended reading for aspiring actors, even for those who don't plan to represent themselves, since any actor's current representative could choose to leave or unfortunately be fired at any day.


The Health/Medicine Shelf

The Evolution of Aging
Theodore C. Goldsmith
Azinet Press
PO Box 239, Crownsville, MD 21032
0978870905 $14.95 www.azinet.com/books

Now in an updated second edition The Evolution of Aging: How New Theories Will Change the Future of Medicine is a thoughtful historical review of biological theories that seek to answer the question, "Why do we age?" Written by former NASA engineer Theodore C. Goldsmith, The Evolution of Aging covers evolution theory, historic and traditional theories of aging, digital genetics and evolution theory, discoveries affecting aging theory, new theories of evolution and aging, anti-aging research, flaws in the theories discussed, and much more. Accessible to readers of all backgrounds, The Evolution of Aging is a fascinating, evenhanded dissection and summary of the oldest legends about aging, the latest cutting-edge research, and everything in between.

Who Stole My Food? Book I
Harold Rongey, Ph.D.
R/B Publishing, LLC
0978630106 $16.95

Written by food scientist and nutritionist Harold Rongey, Ph.D., Who Stole My Food? Book I is an educational guide about nutrition and its relationship to bodily health, written for readers of all backgrounds. Who Stole My Food? particularly focuses on debunking common myths - particularly the myth of food pyramids. Eating foods in the wrong combinations - combinations too often promoted by what Rongey ruthlessly calls the "House of Deception", corporate and commercial interests who care about profiteering, not human health - can cause a number of chronic illnesses. Who Stole My Food? Book I presents Rongey's ideas, opinions, and amassed experience for maintaining good nutrition and good health, in an accessible, no-nonsense style. A hoax-shattering, health-conscious, myth-busting wake-up call to conflicting interests concerning nutrition information.

Simple Health Value
Dr. Andrew Myers
Health Value Publications
1770 W. State Street, Box 318, Boise, ID 83702
0979022908 $14.95 www.simplehealthvalue.com

Written by natural medicine expert Dr. Andrew Myers, Simple Health Value: Five Overlooked Lifestyle Choices You Can Make Now is a straightforward primer to basic lifestyle changes anyone can make to improve their overall health and well-being. In a nutshell, Simple Health Value advocates the benefits of drinking more water, eating fresh foods, daily exercise, sufficient sleep, and improved breathing habits. Written in plain terms for lay readers, Simple Health Value is about adding good things to one's life, not taking things away; practical methodologies are offered for painlessly incorporating these improved positive activities in one's daily routine. A wonderfully refreshing guide to revitalizing one's health habits.

Making the Connection
Mohab Hanna, MD
Ladner-Drysdale
2776 south Arlington Mill Drive, Arlington, VA 22206
0976066211 $79.95 www.adhdparents.com

Written by child & adolescent psychiatrist Mohab Hanna, MD, Making the Connection: A Parents Guide to Medication in AD/HD is a practical, plain-terms guide written especially for parents in search of answers for how to help their children with Attention Deficit Disorder and/or hyperactivity. Making the Connection does not try to pressure the reader into using medication on AD/HD children; neither does it exhort against the use of medication. The goal here is be as informative as possible, and help parents make the difficult choice of whether and/or how much to medicate. Both stimulant and non-stimulant medications are covered, and the "Twenty-One Medication Rules Every Parent Needs to Know" are especially valuable. ("Rule #18: Closely note baseline sleep, appetite, and mood prior to initiating a medication trial.") A list of recommended websites and an index round out this absolute "must-have" for any parent of a child diagnosed with AD/HD.

The Comfort of Home for Stroke
Maria M. Meyer and Paula Derr, RN, with Jon Caswell
CareTrust Publications LLC
PO Box 10283, Portland, Oregon 97296-0283
0966476786 $24.95

The Comfort of Home for Stroke: A Guide for Caregivers is a practical guide especially for anyone charged with the responsibility of taking care of a stroke survivor. Chapters instruct the reader in the causes of stroke and how to prevent one from recurring, how to make the home safe and comfortable for a stroke survivor, the key factors for a successful stroke recovery, how to communicate effectively with health care professionals, coping with personality changes in a stroke survivor, handle everyday activities such as wheelchair transfers, bathing, and toiletries, and much more. Written in plain terms, and filled with valuable checklists, bullet points, black-and-white diagrams, lists of resources, glossary, and index, The Comfort of Home for Stroke is an absolute "must-have" for anyone working with or taking care of a stroke survivor. Highly recommended.

I Was Poisoned By My Body
Gloria Gilbere
Lucky Press
126 South Maple Street, Lancaster, OH 43130
0977630064, $22.95 www.luckypress.com

Gloria Gilbere is a doctor of traditional naturopathy and natural health, a homeopath, an Eco Ergonomist, and is especially known in alternative medicine for her approach to skin and body rejuvenation'. Therefore she brings a special expertise to "I Was Poisoned By My Body... I Have A Gut Feeling You Could Be, Too!". Now in a newly revised and substantially updated edition, this compendium of commentary, description, analysis and advice covers everything from food allergies, chronic fatigue, arthritis, autoimmune disorders, and heartburn, to acid reflux, liver dysfunction, muscle pains, migraines, colon disorders, anaphylaxis, candid, and gluten intolerance. Of special note is Gilbere's survey and discussion of environmental illnesses because she was able to reverse her own condition of fibromyalgia, leaky gut syndrome and multiple allergic responses with natural methods and has enjoyed her recovery for the past ten years now. Enhanced with the useful addition of resource listings for testing, products, colon hydro-therapy, 'Consulting with Gloria', education, drugs classified as benzodiazepines, as well as website information and support groups, "I Was Poisoned By My Body" also features an extensive bibliography and a comprehensive index. Informed and informative, thoroughly 'reader friendly', and an invaluable addition to the growing library of Alternative Medicine reference collections, "I Was Poisoned By My Body" is especially recommended reading for anyone suffering from environmentally influenced illnesses and allergies.

Green Tea Healing Miracle
Billie J. Sahley & Katherine Birkner
Pain & Stress Publications
5282 Medical Drive, Suite 160, San Antonio, TX 78229-6043
1889391328, $7.95 www.painstresscenter.com

The collaborative effort of Billie J. Sahley and Katherine Birkner, "Green Tea Healing Miracle" is a slender, 99-page history and compendium of the medicinal values and uses of green tea. The antioxidant, antibacterial, and antivirus properties of green tea have long been known in folk medicine. Now buttressed by current finds of medical research which authenticates and documents these known medical values of green tea, "Green Tea Healing Miracle" will enable readers to knowledgeably utilize green tea in their struggles with disease prevention, treatments of cancer, heart disease, elevated cholesterol, dental caries, weight control, inflammation, aging of the brain, and more. "Green Tea healing Miracle" is important and 'user friendly' reading that is especially recommended to the attention of anyone needing to improve and support their immune system, seeking to maintain their overall health regardless of their age, reduce the stress in the lives, improve their ability to sleep, and control their weight.


The Self-Help Shelf

U.N.I.Q.U.E.
Debra J. Slover
Leader Garden Press
PO Box 841, Albany, OR 97321
0978679806 $18.95 (pb) 0978679814 $26.99 (hb) www.leadergardenpress.com

Written by youth and adult leadership trainer Debra J. Slover, U.N.I.Q.U.E.: Growing the Leader Within is a self-help guide to cultivating purpose, aim, and leadership skills within oneself. Chapters discuss how to balance the four key behavioral attributes a leader needs (visualization, organization, harmonization, and energization), how to practice and attain the key traits needed for leadership, tips, tricks, and techniques for expressing the voice of the leader spirit within, and much more. Accessible to readers of all ages and backgrounds, and drawing upon vignettes and the occasional gardening metaphor to illustrate its point, U.N.I.Q.U.E. is an excellent heart, mind, and spirit self-help guide, whether preparing to lead a business, a sports team, a coalition, a few friends, or simply oneself.

In the Sphere of Silence
Vijay Eswaran
Privately Published
c/o TCI Smith Publicity
532 Old Marlton Pike, Suite 154, Marlton, NJ 08053-2075
9719264721 $19.95 www.inthesphereofsilence.com

In The Sphere of Silence is a simple guide to reconnecting with one's spirituality through a process of one-hour quietude and reflection. In the Sphere of Silence does not immerse itself in technical terms but rather delivers its message through very simple instructions (for example, the second phase of pursuing the Sphere of Silence is to read an educational, vocational, or motivational book for 15 minutes, then spend 5 minutes writing down, reviewing, and remembering key points form it). Numerous short quotes, reflections, insights, and suggestions, such as "The man who is detached is not afraid to lose anything. We lose only what we cling to", enhance this basic guide to a spiritual practice focused upon knowing oneself better and opening oneself up to God. A set of questions and answers about the Sphere of Silence method conclude In the Sphere of Silence (Question 17: "How does this habit help you make more money?" Answer: "This does not help you make more money. Wealth is a state of mind. Being rich does not make you wealthy. The Sphere of Silence helps you understand this state of mind.") Highly recommended.

Transforming Burnout
Alan Shelton MD
Vibrant Press
PO Box 8605, Tacoma, WA 98418
0978795202 $12.95

Transforming Burnout is a self-help guide that tells the true story of how physician Alan Shelton, MD learned how to genuinely heal himself of job-related burnout. Shelton tells of how he lost all enthusiasm for his job and, seeking help, encountered a Native American traditional healer who introduced him to the ancient concept of the Wellness Circle and his place within it. By rebuilding his connection to spiritual life, Shelton learned how to reconnect with the aspects that made his personal and professional life worth living. Transforming Burnout presents his lessons for others in need of self-renewal. A powerful testimony to the infinite gift of spirituality.

That's What I'm Talkin' About
T. L. Orcutt
Global Village Publishing
10601 Tierrasanta Blvd., PMB 336, San Diego, CA 92124
0962343463 $16.95

Zen psychotherapist and philosopher T. L. Orcutt presents That's What I'm Talkin' About: Awakening in the Land of Human Beings, a guide to resisting alarmist hype fed to today's citizenry to deliberately keep them in a state of fear, and keep them obedient to corporate interests. Stressing the importance of community, consciousness, and upholding the values of human freedom, cultural dignity, and respect for the planet, That's What I'm Talkin' About walks the reader through expanding one's awareness enough to accept the things that cannot be changed and apply courage to the things that can. Sound tidbits of practical advice are closely interwoven with the philosophical concepts, such as "Other than sexual relations, treat your husband as you would your best girlfriend, or treat your wife as you treat your best buddy. That will ground your life!" Strongly emphasizing spiritual integrity and the communal bond of all human souls, That's What I'm Talkin' about is an uplifting, motivational, and often quite practical book.


The Fantasy/SciFi Shelf

The Legacy of Ogma
E. A. Rappaport
Owl King Publishing
119 Kennedy Drive, Orange, CT 06477-2631
1419632957 $15.99 www.weaponstrilogy.com

Written by E. A. Rappaport, The Legacy of Ogma: Book One in the Weapons Trilogy is a fantasy novel about a band of adventurers in a magical world, pursuing a hidden secret. Halia, a skilled young woman forced into a life of thievery; Ahriman, a skilled and powerful sorcerer; and Xarun, a hulking, fierce and at best tactless warrior, must combine their strengths to brave magical worlds and ruthless threats that none of them could hope to confront alone. A potent sword and sorcery adventure with a multi-layered plot, brimming with action from cover to cover.

Left in the Dark
John Gordon
Medusa Press
PO Box 458, San Carlos, CA 94070
9780972532419 $40.00 www.medusapress.com

Left in the Dark is an anthology of collected supernatural and horror tales by English author John Gordon, including many never before gathered together and a spine-tingling new short story, "The Night Watch", written especially for the collection. Exploring the dark and fearsome borderline between age states, life and death, terror and survival, the stories of Left in the Dark range from the approaching menace of "Grandmother's footsteps" to the agonizing touch of "The Burning Baby". A haunting, at times darkly fantastic, at times gruesomely morbid anthology, especially ideal for reading by a fireplace - or any other source of light, warmth and heat to ward away the chill.

Cleansing Hunt
Greg Park
Bladestar Publishing
1499 North 950 West, Orem, UT 84057
0978793196 $24.95

Written by English, Japanese, and creative writing teacher Greg Park, Cleansing Hunt: Book Two of The Earthsoul Prophecies is a fantastic novel about a dying world with more than six thousand years of epic history. The refleshed dreadlord Throy Shadan and his fell army are poised to sack and ruin the nation of Kelsa, and the allied nations of the Nine Lands must brace themselves for a renewed, costly war. Amid the gathering storm, Jase Fairimor and his friends learn of the lost Temple of Elderon with a Blood Orb of Elsa - a talisman potent enough to heal the wounds of a dying planet. The wicked Shadan lusts after the talisman for his own purposes, but neither is Jase completely immune to the siren call of power. Jase's earlier misuses of Power have left a dark mark on him, and now, even as he seeks the talisman, he may yet be Earthsoul's greatest threat rather than its greatest hope. A wonderfully crafted, immersive epic fantasy. Also highly recommended is the first novel in The Earthsoul Prophecy series, Veil of Darkness.

The War of Mirrors
E. J. Stewart & William Stewart
Leaf and Vine Books
387 Ivy Street, San Francisco, CA 94102
0978608712 $18.95 www.warofmirrors.com

Written by English professor E .J. Stewart and illustrated with a handful of simple drawings by William Stewart, The War of Mirrors is a novel for older children and young adults, set in the fantastic land of Larkwood, populated by talking animals ruled by a human king. When pride and envy cause upheaval among the animals, some of the creatures discover the dangerous and destructive power of mirrors. Different animals take different sides; some remain neutral, but all are devastated by fallout from the terrible war. At last, the noble Prince Acorn shames the creatures into concluding peace. A strong allegorical tale, written to evoke compassion and promote contemplation of serious matters and encourage young people to look at the world rationally, and see things for how they really are. Highly recommended.


The Money/Finance Shelf

Spending Grandma's Inheritance
J. Mark Fisher
Privately Published
148 Miracle Strip Pkwy, SE, Suite 2, Fort Walton Beach, FL 32548
0977026205 $18.00 www.jmarkfisher.com

Spending Grandma's Inheritance: A Probate Lawyer's Journey Through Estate Planning and Probate is a collection of brief, true tales from Attorney J. Mark Fisher's twenty years of experience as a specialist in estate planning and probate. Told with dry humor, these stories present every outrageous thing he has heard in his profession from "We've ruined the kids but maybe there's hope for the grandkids" to "My son's widow has all my money" to "I've had six husbands and I'm still looking for a good one." Part cautionary anthology, part laugh-out-loud funny insight into the depths of human greed and wrangling, part legal analysis, part seasoned professional's opinion, Spending Grandma's Inheritance is pure fun to read and simultaneously a very informative introduction to some of the most complicated hassles and problems involved in estate planning. A sample tip from the text: "In my opinion, a child under the age of 25 should never receive a large lump sum of money. They do not appreciate the money and do not have the discipline to keep it. Most will squander it in the first few years and never have it as security for retirement."

An Ordinary, Happy Man
Mark Barnes
DNA Press
PO Box 572, Eagleville, PA 19408
1933255293 $13.95 www.dnapress.com

Written by teacher and seminar conductor Mark Barnes, An Ordinary, Happy Man: Living Rich When You're Not Wealthy is a simple guide to living a happy and financially independent life. Always starkly honest, at moments cynical, yet overall upbeat, An Ordinary, Happy Man draws upon Barnes' own experience as a formerly unhappy man who learned how to transform his life. In addition to providing practical tips, tricks, and techniques for stability and self-reliance ("Beware the Deadly Weapon in Your Wallet", i.e. the insidiously seductive credit card; quick-fixes to serious problems just don't work; and being rich is a completely separate thing from being financially wealthy). Barnes is also unapologetic about expressing his disapproval about the harm caused by such diverse cultural phenomena as Dr. Phil, Bush's No Child Left Behind plan, Tony Robbins, and just about every diet book in existence. Written in plain terms for readers of all backgrounds, An Ordinary, Happy Man is solidly recommended for its straight-from-the-hip shooting about how to improve what really matters in life.


The Education Shelf

The Way of the Teacher
J. M. Haile
Macatea Productions
217 Todds Creek Road, Central, SC 29630
0972860215 $19.95 www.macatea.com

Written by science and engineering teacher J. M. Haile, The Way of the Teacher is a most unusual motivational and advice compendium for schoolteachers. The practical tips, tricks, and techniques are presented in poetic form, though The Way of the Teacher is straightforward nonfiction. The minimalist free-verse allows ideas and recommendations to be presented in nutshell concept, without an excess of verbiage distraction from key points. An excellent reflection and self-improvement book, especially recommended for teachers of all walks of life. "There is a time to lecture, / and a time to dialog. // Spend a little time each week / simply talking with students. // Sit down with the class / and find out what they're doing with the material. / How are they thinking about it? / Are they talking about the material outside of class? / Are they connecting it to other parts of their lives?"


The Biography Shelf

Unlawful Flight
Glen C. Schulz
Wind Blown Books
PO Box 721683, Houston, TX 77272-1683
097899230X $14.95 www.unlawfulflight.com

Unlawful Flight: A Parental Kidnapping is the true-life memoir of father's rights advocate Glen C. Shulz, whose acrimonious divorce culminated in a false accusation of sexually abusing his two children. Stripped of his visitation rights without so much as a hearing, and desperate to be with his children despite a legal system heavily biased against him, he fled with both children to Houston, Texas. On the run from the FBI and the police, he and his children assumed false identities and received help from friends, family, and teachers, who hid the children when Glen was arrested and when their mother tried to steal them back. Eventually, after multiple arrests, Glen succeeded in denying overwhelming odds and earning full custody of his children. A heart-wrenching story of family strife, yet also of love and ultimately of reconciliation. A final afterword from Glen's daughter rounds out the compelling tale: "There has never been a day in my whole life when I regretted what my father has done... I did eventually forge a relationship with my mother; I got to know her for eight years before her untimely death. In the end there were no harsh words spoken, just a family that had finally come full circle." A powerful testimony of one man's dedication to his children, and the trying family times that tested and tempered his faith in God.

Hitchhiking From Vietnam
Richard Chamberlin
Spinoza Publishing
PO Box 14768, Madison, WI 53708
0978909305, $14.95, www.spinozapublishing.com

"Hitchhiking From Vietnam: Seeking The Ox" is the personal story of Richard Chamberlin who, at the age of 30, decided to travel across America by hitch-hiking as a way of finding out about himself, and finding out about the country in whose behalf he'd just fought a war in a place called Viet Nam. The year was 1975 and he began his journey of discovery in the politically and socially liberal city of Madison, Wisconsin a place that had been, along with Berkeley, California, one of the principal centers of opposition to the Viet Nam War. Hooking up with a man named Ken-Adi that he met in a laundromat, Richard and his new friend decide to hitchhike to San Francisco on a trip that takes on the qualities of a spiritual quest. Writing about his life on the road, Richard deftly incorporates flashback scenes from his time with the Navy's Seabees in Vietnam. By the end of this fascinating memoir, Richard records a conversation with a friend that puts the puzzle pieces of his eclectic life into a pattern while watching horses cavort in a corral at sunset on the outskirts of Fort Collins, Colorado. This is a returning war veteran's skillfully written narrative of how he came to acquire perspective on the events that shaped and influenced his generation. Highly recommended reading that is as thoughtful and thought-provoking as it is inherently engaging and coherently presented, "Hitchhiking From Vietnam" would prove very useful, practical, and helpful reading for returning veterans of later American military ventures down to and including the present conflicts in Afghanistan and Iraq.

America's Polka King
Bob Dolgan
Gray & Company
1588 E. 40th St., Cleveland, OH 44103
1598510266 $14.95 ww.grayco.com

Written by columnist and polka dancer Bob Dolgan, America's Polka King: The Real Story of Frankie Yankovic and His Music is the true-life story of ethnic Slovenian and Cleveland native Frankie Yankovic, winner of the first Polka Grammy, whose hit, upbeat tunes earned him international fame and fortune. Chapters cover his turbulent life, his service in World War II, the loves of his life including the bitter end to his first marriage, raising his children, and of course, the absolutely stunning and smashing popularity of his music. Black-and-white photographs, an extensive discography, and an index round out this appealing survey of the sunshine and shadows in a groundbreaking musician's life.

What in the World!
Michael Smith
East West Discovery Press
818 west 144th Street, Gardena, CA 90247
0966943740 $19.95 www.eastwestdiscovery.com

What in the World: Wild, Weird, and Wonderful Adventures of a Wanderer is the true-life travel memoir of award-winning writer Michael Smith, who tells of his exciting journey worldwide through a series of vignettes (often only one page in length) and gorgeous full-color photography on almost every page. From Syria to Cambodia to Japan, Russia, Ecuador, Denmark, Hungary, Switzerland, and much more, Smith's trip spans dozens of nations, and he pauses to admire the cultural wonders of each one. The page listing travel necessities will prove especially useful to anyone considering a similar trip. A delightful smorgasbord, especially recommended for armchair travelers.

Legacy of the White Eagle
Julian E. Kulski
Hart, McMurphy & Parks
102 West Washington Street, Middlesburg, VA 20117
NHD
0119 Cecil Hall, University of Maryland, College Park, MD 20742
142430525X $24.95 www.amazon.com

Legacy of the White Eagle is the true story of author Julian E. Kulski's childhood resistance to Germany's occupation of his native Poland in World War II. When the Nazi invasion in 1939 shattered Poland's democratic government and Kulski's Christian family, Kulski swore an oath of secrecy and became a freedom fighter at the age of 12. He struggled against the occupation and survived as a prisoner of war until American soldiers rescued him from a German prison camp at age 16. A handful of maps and black-and-white illustrations enhance Legacy of the White Eagle, as does an accompanying DVD with recent videotaped interviews with Kulski and surviving freedom fighters in Warsaw, and also a teacher's guide recommending topics for students' research. A gripping, personal life story accessible to high school students and adults alike, Legacy of the White Eagle is a welcome addition to public and college library systems.


The Pets/Wildlife Shelf

Stop the Shots!
John Clifton
Foley Square Books
PO Box 20548, Park West Station, New York, NY 10025
0976084627 $8.95 www.stoptheshots.com www.foleysquarebooks.com

Despite its title, Stop the Shots!: Are Vaccinations Killing Our Pets? does not advocate stopping all pet vaccinations, and especially does not recommend stopping all vaccinations that protect from the most widespread and deadly infections like rabies, parvovirus and canine distemper for dogs, and panleukopenia and rhinotracheitis/calcivirus for cats. Yet award-finalist author and pet lover John Clifton logically and rationally argues against so-called conventional wisdom, such as vaccinating against diseases that pets will never be exposed to (like Lyme disease for a pet that does not live in or won't travel to an area infested with it) or the use of annual booster shots. Chapters discuss how vaccines work, the health detriments to over-vaccination such as increased risk of pet cancer or curtailment of the pet's immune system's ability to naturally fight off diseases, factors to keep in mind when deciding when the proper time is for a booster shot, and much more. Enthusiastically recommended for animal owners and would-be owners as an informative aid to decide the right amount of vaccines to protect one's pet and keep it as healthy as possible.


The Black Studies Shelf

Untold Glory
Alan Govenar
Harlem Moon
1745 Broadway, New York, NY 10019
0767921178 $ 15.95 www.harlemmoon.com

Alan Govenar, president and founder of the nonprofit cultural history organization Documentary Arts, presents Untold Glory: African Americans in Pursuit of Freedom, Opportunity, and Achievement, a compilation of twenty-four oral accounts of African-Americans whose efforts stretched past self-imposed and culturally imposed boundaries and into the frontiers of history. From IBM Vice President and Inventors Hall of Fame member Mark Dean, to Civil Rights attorney Oliver W. Hill, to classical pianist and museum founder Josephine Love, each individual dedicated himself or herself to greatness. Extensively researched, featuring a handful of black-and-white photographs, Untold Glory is an inspirational anthology and enthusiastically recommended especially for public library collections.


The Sports Shelf

Self-Massage For Athletes
Rich Poley
Two Hand Press, LLC
PO Box 4236, Boulder, CO 80306
0977608603, $19.95 www.selfmassageforathletes.com

"Self-Massage For Athletes" offers a complete and thoroughly 'user friendly' how-to guide to the art and benefits of massage for active people engaged in sports and exercise. Author Rich Poley lays out seven simple massage strokes (nicely illustrated with more than one hundred black-and-white photographs) that together form an effective self-massage therapy for stressed and tired muscle systems. Many of the techniques cited, illustrated and recommended in "Self-Massage For Athletes" are similar to those utilized by the professional masseur. Poley also presents the 'science behind the magic of massage', while revealing ways to effectively self-massage each part of the body, use simple acupressure techniques, find and release sensitive 'trigger points', as well as the use of self-massage tools to massage the back. "Self-Massage For Athletes" is confidently recommended for athletes of any age or condition who cannot afford or otherwise have access to a masseuse, but wish to benefit from the efficacy of an effective massage after their exertions.


The American History Shelf

Echoes Of Yesterday
Lance Armstrong
Regent Press
6020-A Adeline, Oakland, CA 94608
1587901250, $39.95 www.regentpress.net

"Echoes Of Yesterday": Elk Grove, An inside View Of Historic Sites" by Lance Armstrong is a 374-page compendium presenting the history and development of the small community of Elk Grove, California, beginning with the settlement of ranches and the founding of the town in 1895, and ending with a descriptive portrait of its status in 2005. Informed, informative, and profusely illustrated throughout with period photography of its people, buildings and places, "Echoes Of Yesterday" is an impressive, specialized history that will prove of particular interest to anyone who has every lived there, as well as being enthusiastically recommended for both academic and community library California History collections. "Echoes of Yesterday" would also serve as an excellent template upon which similar township histories could be written and presented.


The Literary Shelf

Decompositions
Eric Basso
Asylum Arts Press
c/o Leaping Dog Press
PO Box 90473, Raleigh, NC 27675-0473
1878580582 $20.00 www.leapingdogpress.com

Decompositions: Essays on Art & Literature 1973-1989 collects all of critically acclaimed playwright Eric Basso's writings discussing art and literature into a single volume. Decompositions does not shy from morbid topics in classic writings, such as the deathless apparition in Maurice Blanchot's "Death Sentence", Poe's frightening account of hypnotic suspension, and Rene Daumal's dangerous experiments with asphyxiation. Decompositions explores not only the toll it takes to create art, but also the potential of being metaphorically or personally destroyed by one's creation. A handful of black-and-white photographs illustrate this intriguing contemplation of the dark side of artistic passion.


James A. Cox
Editor-in-Chief
Midwest Book Review
278 Orchard Drive
Oregon, WI 53575-1129
phone: 1-608-835-7937
e-mail: mbr@execpc.com
e-mail: mwbookrevw@aol.com
http://www.midwestbookreview.com


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