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Small Press Bookwatch

Volume 4, Number 7 July 2005 Home | SPBW Index

Table of Contents

Reviewer's Choice Biography Shelf Literary Shelf
Fiction Shelf Poetry Shelf Fantasy/SciFi Shelf
Health/Medicine Shelf Self-Help Shelf Metaphysical Studies Shelf
Children's Shelf Photography Shelf Christian Studies Shelf

Reviewer's Choice

Cherish Her
Garry Cale
High Point Publications
PO Box 2629, Olympia, WA 98507-2629
0972774300 $10.95

Cherish Her by Garry Cale is a compilation of inspired and inspiring quotes, observations, maxims, advice, suggestions, and even some very special recipes. A book more to be browsed through at leisure than a front to back speed read, Cherish Her would make a terrific leisure choice for those who enjoy reflecting on life beyond the constrains of pessimism or the limitations of optimism. Author Garry Cale provides invaluable insights into honoring our wives, our daughters, and our sisters. An especially recommended, 69-page, highly portable "take along" volume that can be enjoyed anywhere and anytime, Cherish Her is ideal for gift giving, whether to a loved one or to oneself.

Toward a Philosophy of Perception: The Magnitude of Human Potential--Cloud Optics
Margaret A. Harrell
Author House
1663 Liberty Drive, Suite 200, Bloomington, IN 47403-5161
Coffeetable Paperback, 120 pages,
142080149X $41.25 1-800-280-7715

In Toward a Philosophy of Perception: The Magnitude of Human Potential--Cloud Optics, author Margaret Harrell deftly combines the visual imagery of clouds with a unique and almost metaphysical approach to the development of self-insight. Providing a kind of spiritual energy driving the mind's eye to an experience with the divine, readers will discover within themselves a kind of animated and animating energy that can be called upon as a resource to accomplish an enduring understanding of the nature of being and perception. The reader accompanies the author on a mutual journey of discovery into realms of higher consciousness, which in term is a fundamental approach to shaping an improved and improving personal future in this life -- and perhaps extending into the next one as well. Especially recommended to the attention of Metaphysical Studies and Psychology Studies reference collections, as well as personal Self-Help/Self-Improvement reading lists, Toward A Philosophy Of Perception is so richly textured in thought and concept that a single reading will not suffice. This is a book to be read and savored and reflected upon time and time again.

The Biography Shelf

Capital Tennis
Allie Ritzenberg
The Francis Press
3029 Ordway Street, NW, Washington, DC 20008
0966505190 $19.95

Capital Tennis: A Memoir is the personal musings of Allie Ritzenberg, founder and director of St. Albans Tennis Club. Ritzenberg's club was at the crest of a sweeping change, sparked during the Kennedy administration, in which Washington's power elite favored tennis rather than golf, the favored sport of the Eisenhower administration. Ritzenberg personally coached such memorable figures as Jacqueline Kennedy, Robert McNamara, George McGovern and Donna Shalala. Ritzenberg's memoir is packed with telling glimpses of dozens of public figures, as well as his own personal efforts to found the club as a place of equality as surely as the spirit of sports - though St. Albans was a private club, it would not discriminate on the basis of race or religion, an almost unprecedented decision in 1962, two years before Congress passed the Civil Rights Bill of 1964. An inset selection of black-and-white photographs rounds out this revealing, heartwarming, and inspirational testimony.

The Literary Shelf

Three Generations
Yom Sang-seop
Archipelago Books
25 Jay Street, #203, Brooklyn, NY 11201
0974968005 $30.00 1-800-283-3572

Originally published in 1931 as a serial in "Chosun Ilbo", and fluently translated from the original Korean, Three Generations is a classic work of Korean fiction following the tense dynamics of the Jo family in 1930s Japanese-occupied Seoul. Skillfully describing traditional Korean family structure, and vividly portraying the effects of Japanese rule, Three Generations presents a fierce battle between modern and traditional elements, as well as a chilling portrayal of the ruthlessness with which a colonial power imposed its will upon those under its control. Author Yom Sang-seop was one of the few Korean writers of the era who remained true to his ideals and did not write in Japanese or write pro-Japanese articles. A highly recommended and welcome contribution to modern Asian literature shelves.

The Fiction Shelf

Power Play
Jonathan Neff
Hawk Publishing Group
7101 S. Yale #345, Tulsa, OK 74136
1930709560 $24.95

Power Play is a suspenseful novel of danger, intrigue, and globe-spanning corruption. When a gutsy public utility commissioner who dares to take a stand against the controversial Greenleaf Project gets in over his head, he turns to his life-long friend and expert lawyer for help and protection. But the two of them are just beginning to scratch the surface of a lethal conspiracy between greedy corporate executives, the Russian Mafia, and Afghani terrorists. Struggling to defend themselves against attacks on their lives, an attempted murder charge, and a sinister plot that endangers thousands of lives - including that of a Russian ballerina desperate to escape the clutches of brooding master musician and Russian Mafia figurehead. An exciting thrill ride, packed with sudden twists and turns to the very end.

Digging To Indochina
Connie Biewald, Inc.
2021 Pine Lake Road, #100, Lincoln, NE 68512
059532231X $15.95

Seventeen-year-old Ivy MacKenzie spends most of her time killing time at Rivertown Billiards, the local pool hall that her father often went to before his death. Ivy maintains a kind of swaggering bravado as a shield protecting her feelings of personal insecurity. Nonetheless, she's determined to see the world on her own terms, even if it means running of to Florida with Gil Thompson, an abusive stranger she encountered playing pool. Then there is her fifteen-year-old Bryan and their mother Carol, who have the support of a high school shop teach, Neal Richards, a man who has become a part of the MacKenzie family. When Ivy goes out on her own, the only news of her comes in the form of cryptic postcards until she shows up, humiliated, mortified, and personally disillusioned, on her family's doorstep needing them to save her from herself and the violent man who insists that Ivy loves him and is determined to make her admit it. A first place winner for fiction in the 2005 Writer's Digest Contest, Digging To Indochina clearly establishes Connie Biewald as a superbly talented author whose ability to grip her reader's total interest remains unabated from first page to last. Digging To Indochina is very highly recommended reading that will linger long in the mind after the book has been finished and set back upon the shelf.

Bud Rudesill
PO Box 151, Frederick, MD 21705-0151
1413750117 $19.95

Expatriate is a 340-page novel by Bud Rudesill in which he draws upon his own experiences as a geology technician, instructor, and research assistant in Dhahran, Saudi Arabia (as well as his wife's experiences in Khamis Mushayt and Riyadh as a nurse) to tell the fictional story of Cullen Mackenzie, the son of a geologist who grew up in Saudi Arabia during the 1950s and eventually returned to the U.S. Eighteen years later he has come back to Saudi Arabia with a marriage that is troubled and troubling. That's when he falls in love with Trista Madison, an Aramco nurse who is as enthusiastic as Bud in wanting to explore this austere, beautiful country with its complex and sometimes contradictory culture. Set in a time just before Saudi Arabia's Bedouin culture would become enmeshed in becoming part of an oil rich nation playing center stage in the world's seemingly insatiable demand for petroleum, Expatriate is a deftly woven novel of memorable personalities, an inherently fascinating culture, and the dynamic tensions between countries that is mirrored in an equally dynamic tension between the protagonist and two women from two different and differing cultures. A full time artist in mediums ranging from watercolors, oils, ceramic sculpture and weaving, to bronze casting, jewelry, and lampworking in glass, Bud Rudesill's debut novel documents an equally artistic flair for the written word.

Down By Two
H. G. Field
1663 Liberty Drive Suite 200, Bloomington, IN 47403
1420805894 $14.95 1-800-839-8640

Set in 1986, Down By Two is a part mystery, part adventure novel following two young high school athletes. Together they form a conflicted alliance to investigate shady dealings behind an archaeology dig. Alternating between the two very different personalities and narrative styles of each protagonist, Down By Two weaves its story through romance, high stakes, and deadly encounters. The unique alternate viewpoint storytelling mode brings the excitement in Down By Two to vivid life.

The Teaching Of Little Crow
Angelina Heart
Heart Flame Publishing
PO Box 790038, Virgin, UT 84779
BookMasters, Inc.
PO Box 2139, Mansfield, OH 44905
0972661808 $25.95 1-800-537-6727

There is a new and growing sub-genre appearing in American literature called "Spiritual Fiction", offering applied spirituality through a fictional format. Angelina Heart's new novel The Teaching Of Little Crow is just such a literary work. This is a romantic story of Dylan Crow, a movie mogul and rock star who has achieved the pinnacle of success and acclaim in his chosen field with all of its perks and prerogative. But he feels a sense of incompleteness and spiritual need that his success simply cannot address. A chance encounter with his "Divine Counterpart" initiates a sudden and surprising education into insights that range from Native American wisdom to the teachings of ancient mystery schools, from New Age metaphysics to orthodox religion. The Teaching Of Little Crow is a deftly written and entrancingly original novel offering an engaging story filled with memorable characters, life affirming metaphysics, and spiritual insights from beginning to end. Highly recommended reading, especially for students of Metaphysics, Spirituality, and who are themselves in search of some higher consciousness and meaning within their own lives.

The Poetry Shelf

Renata And Other Poems
Renata Pallottini
HOST Publications
451 Greenwich Street, #7, NY, NY 10013
0924047275 $15.00 1-212-905-2365

Brazilian poet Renata Pallottini is considered a major poet in her home country. Now in a bilingual edition, Renata And Other Poems is the first time her work has been published in the United States, making her accessible to a whole new audience of appreciative readers. Her poetry showcases the contradictions of everyday life, the balancing of lies and truth, illusions and frustrations, pains and pleasures, even life and death. Ably translated by K. David Jackson (Yale University) and enhanced with an informative introduction by Elzbieta Szoka, Renata And Other Poems (also available in a hardcover edition (0924047267, $25.00) would make a welcome addition to university library collections and International Literary Studies poetry reading lists. A Hard Poem To Give Courage: When the Master takes me/to the buttresses of the hardest squares/and there lets me fall down drunk/someone always picks me up//I never stayed there for more than a few hours/delivered to the hands of animals in the shade/and there was always a pulse for me/something like a poet or a woman who sells tickets//when there wasn't, I had the dew/the repose of stones/and wine without venom//When the Master leaves us/there is always a human being up against the wall/who comes and lifts us up.

The Fantasy/SciFi Shelf

Fear Of The Unknown
Kfir Luzzatto & Monica O'Rourke, editors
Echelon Press Publishing
56 Sawyer Circle, #354, Memphis, TN 38103
1590804163 $12.99

Collaboratively selected, compiled and edited by Kfir Luzzatto and Monica O'Rourke, as well as enhanced with an informative introduction by Chelsea Quinn Yarbro, Fear Of The Unknown is comprised of thirteen outstandingly horrific stories of madness, mayhem, murder, contagion, and the occult. These are short stories by thirteen of the best writers currently working in the horror genre and range from "The God of Dust" (Michael R. Colangelo), to "Don't Look Back" (Christine Morgan), to "Mask and Blade" (Paul Finch), to "Infections of its Taboo" (Terri A. Jacobs). Each of these hair raising, flesh creeping stories features a black & white mood enhancing illustration by an accomplished artist. If you are a fan of deftly woven, original tales horror fantasy, then Fear Of The Unknown is the anthology for you!

The Health/Medicine Shelf

Everything You Need To Know About Nursing Homes
Charlotte Digregorio
Civetta Press
PO Box 1043, Portland, OR 97207-1043
096233183X $19.95 1-503-228-6649

In Everything You Need To Know About Nursing Homes: The Family's Comprehensive Guide To Either Working With The Institution Or Finding Care Alternatives, journalist, lecturer, teacher, and author Charlotte Digregorio provides a complete, truly definitive, 488-page instruction manual specifically designed for non-specialist general readers who find themselves having to deal with arranging for the care of an invalid elder. Charlotte was made aware of the need for a book like this when her own mother needed institutional care due to having lapsed into a coma. Everything You Need To Know About Nursing Homes is a consumer's guide to dealing with the nursing home bureaucracy, working with the institution to resolve care problems, advocating for an elder's therapies, right-to-life and life support issues, finding alternatives to nursing home placement, caring for a bedridden elder at home and so much more. Special features include a wealth of checklists for basic elder care, house options for the elderly, sample letters to health care personnel regarding care, a summary of effective communication to use with health care personnel. Enhanced with an index, as well as appendices listing organizations and website devoted to care options, a glossary of general halth care and legal terms, nursing abbreviations to aid in reading an elder's medical chart, and a bibliography for further study, Everything You Need To Know About Nursing Homes should be on the shelve of every community library and available to every family member charged with an elder care responsibility.

The Self-Help Shelf

Russell C. Kick
Trafford Publishing
BookPros (publicity)
Suite 6E, 2333 Government Street, Victoria, B.C., Canada, V8T 4P4
141202577X $19.95

Russell C. Kick is the CEO and Founder of the Self-Discovery Research Institute. In 1968 he had a near-death experience that was to affect the rest of his life. In Self-Discovery: There's Far More To You And Life Than You Ever Dared To Dream, he lays out an original system of self-discover and self-development he calls The Holistic Way (aka The WAY) in which practitioners will learn how to elevate their awareness, engender peace, and enhanced their sense of well-being, creativity, intelligence, and enlightenment. Highly recommended reading for anyone seeking to improve the quality of their inner lives within the framework of an outer world, The Key To Self-Discovery focuses upon realizing life's purpose through powers such as free will, creativity, love imagination and memory. Kick reveals the use of music to instill harmony in life, the value of living proactively, and employing the empowering energy of the mind to translate the values of the spirit into the freedoms of personal choice, self-discovery, and more.

The Metaphysical Studies Shelf

Touched By The Extraordinary
Susan Barbara Apollon
Matters of the Soul, LLC
PO Box 403, Yardley, PA 19067

In Touched By The Extraordinary, author Susan Barbara Apollon draws upon her more than twenty years of experience as a psychotherapist and healer working with children and adults who were traumatized by diverse and often terminal diseases. Of special poignancy is the perspective she provides from having survived her own illnesses and losses as she shares illuminating insights, applicable lessons, and a comforting wisdom to her readers through the means of anecdotal stories revealing the power of love and spirituality in healing the soul and enhancing the quality of life at its every stage. Beginning with the process of defining what is meant by "extraordinary", Susan goes on to deal with the metaphysical aspects and psychological elements involving dreams, visions, encounters with the senses of the body, intuitive wisdom, automatic writing, precognition, near-death experiences, psychic energy, and more. A very special chapter is devoted to the experienced phenomena of deceased loved ones, divine and spiritual beings, angels, and the communicative presence of higher evolved beings. Another chapter takes up extrasensory perception, mediation, intercessory prayer, distant healing, miracles, and "coincidental synchronicity" with the authors observation that there really are no such things as "coincidence" with respect to our inner lives. The balance of Touched By The Extraordinary consists of a plethora of personal experiences that illustrated the metaphysical, the paranormal, and the spiritual -- as evidenced in ordinary people having extraordinary circumstances and events arise in their otherwise ordinary lives. Of special note is the chapter devoted her own journey of discovery, "Developing Intuitively--My Journey". Superbly written and thoroughly accessible from beginning to end, enhanced with extensive chapter notes, a bibliography (including suggestions for further study), and an extensive index, Touched By The Extraordinary is informed and informative reading strongly recommended for dedicated students of Metphysical Studies, as well as those non-specialist general readers embarking upon their own quest for a better understanding and an improved coping with severe illness and end-of-life issues that we all must face within the compass of our own life journey.

The Children's Shelf

Practice Makes Perfect / La Practica Hace al Maestro
Matt the Rat's Incredible Creations / Las Creaciones Incredibles de Raton Mateo
Lorenzo Liberto, author; Irving Torres, illustrator; Rocio Gomez, translator
Harvest Sun Press
1828 Parkshore Drive, Suite 10, Fayetteville, AR 72703

Harvest Sun Press presents "The Matt The Rat Series", bilingual English/Spanish picturebooks featuring an exuberant young brown rat. The simple, playful artwork perfectly captures the outgoing spirit of the lively protagonist. In "Matt the Rat's Incredible Creations" (0974366838, $20.00) Matt and his sister Maggie learn that there are more ways to entertain oneself than TV. They learn to have fun inventing things, from making paper hats to improvised soccer gear to creating a great Tyrannosaurus out of metal clothes hangers and soda cans and more. In the words of their Grandpa, "Inventing is fun and easy to do. Make a creation, special and new," a wonderful and inspirational message for young children. In Practice Makes Perfect (097436682X, $20.00), Matt and Maggie witness the determination of their friend Fergo, whose dream is to join the circus. At first Fergo is a very clumsy juggler, but with time he becomes more and more skillful, until one day he has a chance to pursue his dream and perform in the spotlight! Matt and Maggie take inspiration from Fergo's hardworking example to pursue their own dreams - Matt wants to become a champion soccer player, and Maggie wants to become a violinist; both learn that through practice and training one's ability can be honed to spectacular and beautiful heights. Both Matt the Rat books are upbeat picturebooks with a positive message, and highly recommended as giftbooks or for children's libraries.

Hello Grand Mamoon!
Donna Steinmann, author; Tamara Guion, illustrator
Earthtime Publications
5662 Calle Real #169, Santa Barbara, CA 93117
0966328647 $16.95

Hello Grand Mamoon! is a charming chilrden's picturebook, about a young girl who is very sad about the death of her grandmother. Her grandmother taught her a special way of looking at the moon - a magical way that reveals a shining, loving face. When the young girl sees the moon and shares her experience, she still feels sad that her grandmother is gone, but she also feels joy because she knows she is always being watched over. The stylized, bold art of Tamara Guion bring the beauty of the night sky to life in this delightful storybook, perfect for bedtime. Photographs of the moon on the last page reveal how anyone can see the beaming face of Grand Mamoon.

The Weight of a Mass
Josephine Nobisso
Gingerbread House
602 Montauk Highway, Westhampton Beach, NY 11978
081462930X $17.95

The Weight of a Mass: A Tale of Faith is an original fairy tale picturebook, based on an event remembered from history. In a faraway land and a time when the people's faith is running cold, a widow begs stale bread in return for offering her participation in the Mass for the royal wedding of the king and queen. The baker scoffs at her request, and as a cruel joke, weighs the weight of one mass - as written on a tiny corner of paper - against the bread to be offered. Yet a miracle intervenes and the scales, honest and true, cannot be balanced no matter how much food is placed within them; for a mass is a sacred thing, and its weight is beyond measure. Written by a true believer in Mass as a holy ceremony fulfilling Jesus' command to repeat His actions and words until He comes, and warmly illustrated in full color with gentle, sunshine-touched artwork, The Weight of a Mass embodies the wonder of Christian celebration and is highly recommended.

Ocean Whisper / Susurro del Oceano
Dennis Rockhill
Raven Tree Press
200 South Washington, Suite 306, Green Bay, WI 54301
0974199249 $16.95

Ocean Whisper / Susurro del Oceano is a children's picturebook featuring a bilingual English/Spanish poem about the quiet warmth of the ocean, and its colorful plants and creatures. The poem leads into an elaborate story told entirely through soft, gentle, deep-toned artwork of a young boy and his dreams of experiencing the ocean firsthand. A unique, vibrant, and almost purely visual experience of wonder, that will surely appeal to and instill an appreciation of the sea's wonders within children of all ages, even the very young.

Elizabeth Whitney Williams & the Little Traverse Light
Mary Hramiec Hoffman
Hramiec Hoffman Studio & Gallery
6911 M119 Harbor Springs, Michigan 49740
0974690104 $17.95 1-231-526-1011

Based upon a true story set in 1800's Michigan's Little Traverse Bay, Elizabeth Whitney Williams & the Little Traverse Light is a children's picturebook about an independent woman who maintained the lighthouse for 29 years so that sailors could find their way. Simplistic pastel illustrations add a cheerful touch to the life story of a woman who always kept an eye on the light. A hand-drawn map of the Great Lakes with some fun facts, simple recipes for handmade butter and rhubarb bread, and visual instructions for drawing Lizzie's dog Hap - an upbeat creature composed mostly of circles - round out this enchanting book with a strong female role model, especially recommended for young girls.

I Take a DEEEP Breath
Sharon Penchina C.Ht. and Dr. Stuart Hoffman
2 Imagine
KSB Promotions (publicity)
10135 East Via Linda, Suite D126, Scottsdale, AZ 85258
0974068462 $12.95 1-866-246-2446

The second book in the "I Am a Lovable ME!" self-empowerment series, I Take a DEEEP Breath is a picturebook encouraging young readers to "take a DEEEP breath in" to gain strength from their own courage and inner peace, then "breathe out" fear and doubt in order to confront new challenges. Simple rhyming verse and four-color illustrations of a friendly six-legged beetle learning to grow from new challenges every day offer an inspiring example of the power of breath when used to focus on positive thoughts and emotions. Highly recommended. "If my parents get angry with me / I take a deeep breath in and breathe out slowly. / I'm not sad anymore; I know they love / me for sure!"

Lavi The Lion Finds His Pride
Linda Dickerson, author; Jennifer Rempel, illustrator
Towers Maguire Publishing
c/o The Local History Company
112 North Woodland Road, Pittsburgh, PA 15232-2849
0974471526 $15.95

Lavi The Lion Finds His Pride is a whimsical children's picturebook featuring a young male lion who has grown too big to live with his mother and her cubs. So he strikes out to find a pride (family) of his own - yet his is a truly adventurous journey, whisking him from Rome to a Texas stage to the city of Pittsburgh, in search of the fabled Pittsburgh Pride. Pittsburgh Pride isn't a lion family - it is the emotion, respect, and commitment people have for their city, yet through that emotion Lavi The Lion finds a place where he truly belongs. The upbeat color illustrations smoothly integrate Lavi into his raucus adventures, and a final page of true facts about lions rounds out this adventurous story.

Freaky Foods From Around The World / Platillos Sorprendentes de Todo el Mundo
Ramona Moreno Winner, author; Luis Borsan, illustrator
BrainStorm 3000
PO Box 42246, Santa Barbara, CA 93140
0965117421 $15.95

Freaky Foods From Around The World / Platillos Sorprendentes de Todo el Mundo is a bilingual English/Spanish picturebook that celebrates willingness to try new things. Half the book is a simple story about young people visiting a restaurant with unusual faire and trying something new. "When food is strange and quite unknown / and not familiar like our own // don't squirm around making funny faces / because food comes from different places. // That's why it's different!" The second half of Freaky Foods From Around The World reveals exotic recipes for preparing animals that aren't always thought of as food in America - from spider salad to fried skunk, stewed cane rat, and more. The orange-hued illustrations add a warmth and humor to this open-minded albiet rather carnivorous book.

Is A Worry Worrying You?
Ferida Wolff and Harriet May Savitz, authors; Marie Le Tourneau, illustrator
Tanglewood Press
PO Box 3009, Terre Haute, IN 47803
0974930326 $15.95

Is A Worry Worrying You? is a picturebook for children that combines whimsical artwork with honest and practical advice for dealing with worries - from everyday worries about bullies and the first day of school to not-so-common worries such as a rhino wandering the neighborhood! A "Worry" is depicted as a big blue monster with no manners, that stays like an uninvited guest - but only as long as one lets it. Is A Worry Worrying You? shows young people means of dealing with worries, from confronting it directly or working on whatever is worrying one, to focusing on happy thoughts, engaging in activities like playing with cards or baking a cake, or talking with friends. Highly recommended.

The Wishing Star
Rita Salter, Inc.
2021 Pine Lake Road, #100, Lincoln, NE 68512
0595341098 $8.95

When he doesn't get a special present on his tenth birthday, Robbie gets angry and makes a rash wish upon a falling star. When his wish comes true, Robbie suddenly finds himself in a strange new and dangerous fantasy world, involuntarily separated from everyone and everything he has ever known! He wakes up to find that he has become a newborn Brontosaur! Now Robbie must learn how to adapt to his new surroundings in order to simply survive from one day to the next. He has the companionship of an older Brontosaur named Bronella and makes friends with Saura. Together Robbie and his new companions struggle against the Terrible Ones, a vicious group of meat eating dinosaurs led by the feared T-Rex Tyra. Can Robbie survive, will he risk his life for the sake of his friends, can his birthday wish ever be undone? The Wishing Star is an original, entertaining, deftly written story that carries a message of courage, compassion, and friendship while thoroughly enthralling young readers with a fantasy adventure that will be remembered long after the story is finished and the novel set back upon the shelf.

The Yosemite Adventure of Spotty Bat
Ken Renshaw
Constellation Press
1790 Ogden Dr., Cambria, CA 93428
0961662026 $10.95

The Yosemite Adventure of Spotty Bat is an allegorical fable for young readers ages eight and up. Spotty, a rare bat, lives comfortably but is searching for something more, when a mysterious and mystical crow teaches her the secret of soaring flight, and shows her the way to Yosemite Valley, where she meets the Spirits of Rock, Water, Air and Fire, who work tirelessly to shape the valley to the present day. Absorbing the values of persistence and conviction from the spirits, Spotty undergoes a change within herself and learns that she has what it takes to be a leader and a teacher among her bat community. The charming pen drawings add a unique visual touch to this delightful story about fulfilling one's potential.

The Photography Shelf

Haines For All Seasons
Kathleen M. K. Menke
Crystal Images
PO Box 781, Haines, Alaska, 99827
0976426102 $24.00 1-907-766-3517

Haines For All Seasons: Northern Exposures From Alaska--Reflecting Our Bond With The Land And Each Other consists of 48 pages showcasing 200 color images of the wildlife, lands, and people of Haines, Alaska. This is a beautiful setting where five runs of wild salmon return to spawn in natural, healthy watersheds; a community of individuals with unique skills, talents, and communal generosity abide; where cultural traditions endure; and where nature's glory in all the seasons of the year are to be observed and celebrated. The photography ranges from the charming to the breath-taking to the inherently fascinating as author/photographer Kathleen Menke reveals what she has managed to capture with camera lens and an artist's eye over the last twenty years. Haines For All Seasons is especially recommended for students of photography, as well as anyone who enjoys a visual tour-de-force armchair traveler through some of the best that Alaska has to offer.

The Christian Studies Shelf

Child Caring
Ardis Gordon
Te Deum Publishing
PO Box 2385, Littleton, CO 80161-2385
0976370832 $34.95 1-303-759-0743

Child Caring: A Helping Hand for Parents and Home Childcare Providers by childcare professional Ardis Gordon is a spiral-bound childcare and parenting guide compiled specifically from a Christian point of view. Written by licensed home childcare provider, wife, mother, and devout Christian Ardis Gordon, Child Caring includes a wide selection of inexpensive, quality children's activities, lists of family-friendly books especially for preschoolers and toddlers, ideas for kid-friendly recipes, ways to make education fun, emotional support, and much more. All contents are organized for swift and easy reference. Intended for parents, grandparents, babysitters, and childcare professionals, Child Caring is a superb resource especially for the Christian family home.

Just Wait! God Is Working It Out
Delorise A. Gines
Leathers Publishing
4500 College Boulevard, Overland Park, KS 66211
1585973009 $14.00 1-888-888-7696

In Just Wait! God Is Working It Out, author Delorise Gines deals with specific challenges that give rise to emotions that can engender discouragement. Through the use of practical Biblical solutions, readers will learn how to deal with loss and death, financial struggles, criticisms and false accusations, a variety of sorrows that are common to our life experiences, and the inevitability of unexpected difficulties and adversities. Each of the six chapters comprising Just Wait! is like a little essay in dealing with Christian confidence what life has to throw at us. Enhanced with appendices and end notes, Just Wait! is especially recommended reading to anyone of faith who could use encouragement in staying the course through the ups and downs of everyday life in these extraordinary times.

Tears from the Crown of Thorns / Lagrimas de la Corona de Espinas
Charlotte Bell
Charlotte Bell Photography and Publishing
1403 Kenwood Ave., Austin, TX 78704
0976495503 $30.00 512-447-2150

Tears from the Crown of Thorns / Lagrimas de la Corona de Espinas is an English/Spanish bilingual and historical book about the Easter observance in the famous city of San Miguel de Allende, Mexico. Full-color photographs on every page capture the vibrancy of life, pious faith, the process of crafting religious statues of angels, saints, Mary, Jesus Christ, and other figures. Covering local traditions of faith from a solemn processional re-enacting the suffering of Christ bearing his own cross, to the more fanciful displays of papier-mache figures of Judas exploding with inner fireworks and much more, Tears from the Crown of Thorns is a respectful survey filled with poignant Christian images that instantly command one's attention.

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

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