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Wisconsin Bookwatch

Volume 9, Number 12 December 2014 Home | WBW Index

Table of Contents

Reviewer's Choice Christmas Shelf Islamic Studies Shelf
Biography Shelf Religion/Spirituality Shelf Christian Studies Shelf
Travel Shelf Cookbook Shelf Music Shelf
Gaming Shelf Health/Medicine Shelf Graphic Novel Shelf
Audiobook Shelf Music CD Shelf DVD Shelf
Theatre/Cinema/TV Shelf Mystery/Suspense Shelf Computer Shelf
Hobby Shelf Fiction Shelf Needlecraft Shelf
Education Shelf Pets/Wildlife Shelf Fantasy/SciFi Shelf
Political Science Shelf Sports Shelf Photography Shelf
Wisconsin Shelf    

Reviewer's Choice

Energize Your Retirement
Christine Sparacino
Via Verde Press
2506 Via Verde, Walnut Creek, CA 94598
9780990566922 $14.99

Energize Your Retirement: Stories of Passionate Pursuits lives up to its title with true tales of American retirees ages 59 through 84, each of whom found engaging and meaningful pursuits to enliven their golden years. In their own words, they tell of finding satisfaction through bird watching and conservation; writing; sculpting; counseling others on Medicare; home brewing; blogging and vlogging (video blogging); operating ham radio; playing softball; and much more. Each person's interview is presented largely in a question-and-answer format, with emphases on how they got started in their chosen activity, and any regulations, licenses, or requirements involved. A handful of black-and-white photographs, an index, and a wealth of informative resources and websites round out this inspirational font of ideas for relishing every day as a retiree!

June Cotner and Nancy Tupper Ling
Viva Editions
2246 Sixth Street
Berkeley, CA 94710-2219
9781936740857 $16.95

Toasts: The Perfect Words to Celebrate Every Occasion is a compendium of witty, insightful, and carefully selected quotes from a diversity of famous individuals. Each quote is ideal for accompanying a toast - whether commemorating a joyous occasion or spreading holiday cheer. Suggested toasts are sorted by suitable category, including christenings, birthdays, charity events, graduations, memorials, holidays ranging from Chanukah, Christmas, Kwanzaa and New Year to Valentine's Day, April Fool's Day, Easter, Mother's Day, Father's Day, Halloween, and much more. A font of inspirational wisdom! "Christmas Eve Blessing: May the mystical peace / of this blessed Christmas Eve / remain in our hearts / throughout the New Year. -Noreen Braman"

The Christmas Shelf

New Orleans Homes at Christmas
Bonnie Warren, author
Cheryl Gerber, photographer
Pelican Publishing Company
1000 Burmaster Street
Gretna, LA 70053-2246
9781455619856 $29.95

Full-color photography on virtually every page enlivens New Orleans Homes at Christmas, a showcase of holiday cheer and festivity through beautiful interior decorations arranged with the utmost care. Christmas trees, wreaths, aesthetic arrangements of garden harvests, and more add just the right touch of winter cheer to living spaces. A font of inspiration for interior Christmas decorations, New Orleans Homes at Christmas is simply beautiful to page through.

The Islamic Studies Shelf

Qur'an In Conversation
Michael Birkel
Baylor University Press
One Bear Place, #97363, Waco, TX 76798-7363
9781481300971, $39.95,

The Quran (which literally translates as "the recitation") is the central religious text of Islam, which Muslims believe to be a revelation from God. Quranic chapters are called suras and verses are called ayahs. Muslims believe that the Quran was verbally revealed by God to Muhammad through the angel Gabriel, gradually over a period of approximately 23 years, beginning on 22 December 609 CE, when Muhammad was 40, and concluding in 632 CE, the year of his death. Muslims regard the Quran as the most important miracle of Muhammad, a proof of his prophethood, and the culmination of a series of divine messages that started with the messages revealed to Adam and ended with Muhammad. They consider the Quran to be the only revealed book that has been protected by God from distortion or corruption. According to the traditional narrative, several companions of Muhammad served as scribes and were responsible for writing down the revelations. Shortly after Muhammad's death, the Quran was compiled by his companions who wrote down and memorized parts of it. These codices had differences that motivated the Caliph Uthman to establish a standard version now known as Uthman's codex, which is generally considered the archetype of the Quran we have today. "Qur'an in Conversation" by Michael Birkel (Professor of Religion, Earlham College) is a 292 page compendium comprised of commentaries by a number of contemporary and eloquent interpreters. Organized into seven major chapters: Knowledge Hidden and Manifest; Close Readings Old and New; Living Tradition; Encountering Others; Contemporary Contexts; Justice; The Journey Inward), "Qur'an In Conversation" is enhanced with Professor Birkel's concluding reflections, five pages of Arabic Terms, ten pages of Notes, four pages of Further Reading on Interpretation of the Qur'an, a list of the participants, and Index of Ancient Sources, as well as a Subject and Contributors Index. A critically important contribution to academic library Islamic Studies reference collections and supplemental studies lists, it should be noted that "Qur'an In Conversation" is also available in a Kindle edition ($17.99).

The Biography Shelf

Peter B. Mersky
Naval Institute Press
291 Wood Road
Annapolis, MD 21402
9781612517919 $39.95

Also available as an ebook, Whitey: The Story of Rear Admiral E. L. Feightner, a Navy Fighter Ace is the first complete biography of one of the last surviving U.S. Navy World War II aces. E.L. Feightner survived some of the war's most dangerous campaigns, including Guadalcanal and the Marianas. A talented flyer with a strong positive outlook, Feightner earned the right to command a squadron and later an air group, developing fighting tactics. He had to grapple with politics in the Pentagon even as he strived to improve naval aviation to keep pace with the changing world. A handful of inset black-and-white photographs, notes, a bibliography, and an index round out this multifaceted portrayal of a loyal soldier, capable leader, and death-defying aviator. Highly recommended!

The Father of Virginia Military Institute
Randolph P. Shaffner
McFarland & Company
PO Box 611, Jefferson NC 28640
9780786493951, $45.00, 284pp,

The Virginia Military Institute (VMI) is a state-supported military college in Lexington, Virginia, the oldest such institution in the United States. Unlike any other senior military college in the United States, all students at VMI are military cadets pursuing bachelor's degrees. VMI offers cadets strict military discipline combined with a spartan, physically and academically demanding environment. The Institute grants degrees in 14 disciplines in engineering, the sciences, and the liberal arts. While VMI has been called the "West Point of the South", it differs from the federal service academies in several respects. For example, the living conditions at VMI are far more austere than at the service academies. Also, while all cadets must participate in the Reserve Officers' Training Corps (ROTC), they are afforded the flexibility of pursuing civilian endeavors or accepting a commission in any of the active or reserve components of any of the US military branches upon graduation. "The Father of Virginia Military Institute: A Biography of Colonel J.T.L. Preston, CSA" by Randolph P. Shaffner is a 384 page biography of the man who founded VMI in 1839. John Thomas Lewis Preson was a teacher and soldier, husband and father, who defined the school as it exists today. He served with distinction in the American Civil War under the Confederate battlefield leadership of Stonewall Jackson as his first adjutant general. An exceptionally well written, organized and presented biography, "The Father of Virginia Military Institute: A Biography of Colonel J.T.L. Preston, CSA" is a highly recommended addition to the growing library of Civil War Literature. It should be noted that ""The Father of Virginia Military Institute: A Biography of Colonel J.T.L. Preston, CSA" is also available in a Kindle edition ($16.49).

Glen Campbell: Life With My Father
Debby Campbell & Mark Bego
The Overlook Press
141 Wooster Street, New York, NY 10012
9781468309652, $26.95,

Glen Travis Campbell (born April 22, 1936) is an American country music singer, guitarist, television host, and occasional actor. He is best known for a series of hits in the 1960s and 1970s, and for hosting a variety show called The Glen Campbell Goodtime Hour on CBS television. During his 50 years in show business, Campbell has released more than 70 albums. He has sold 45 million records and accumulated 12 RIAA Gold albums, 4 Platinum albums and 1 Double-Platinum album. He has placed a total of 80 different songs on either the Billboard Country Chart, the Billboard Hot 100, or the Adult Contemporary Chart, 29 in the Top 10 of which 9 peaked at number one on at least one of those charts. Campbell's hits include his recordings of John Hartford's "Gentle on My Mind", Jimmy Webb's "By the Time I Get to Phoenix", "Wichita Lineman", and "Galveston", Larry Weiss's "Rhinestone Cowboy", and Allen Toussaint's "Southern Nights". "Glen Campbell: Life With My Father" is a 176 page biography written from the perspective of his daughter Debby Campbell. Enhanced with numerous photographs and a fourteen page Glen Campbell Discography, "Glen Campbell: Life With My Father" is very highly recommended for community library American Biography collections and is a "must read" for Campbell's legions of fans!

The Religion/Spirituality Shelf

The Forgiveness Handbook
Created by the Editors at SkyLight Paths
Skylight Paths Publishing
Sunset Farms Offices, Route 4
PO Box 237, Woodstock, VT 05091
9781594735776 $18.99

The Forgiveness Handbook: Spiritual Wisdom and Practice for the Journey to Freedom, Healing and Peace gathers wisdom and advice from multiple spiritual leaders, from reverends to rabbis. Topics covered include reconciliation and forgiveness in relationships, forgiveness and the divine, what it means to love one's enemies, the connection between forgiveness and justice, and much more. "The Truth and Reconciliation Commission established in South Africa following the fall of apartheid, the system of racial segregation that was in place in that country between 1948 and 1994, is a good example of this need for forgiveness. South Africa's black community had every right to be angry, perhaps even to hate, for their lives had been made a living hell... But Nelson Mandela and Desmond Tutu saw a more excellent way... Both Tutu and Mandela believed that punishing the criminal would not alone create a climate of reconciliation; rather, it was important that crimes be admitted and the truth be told." A deeply profound and heart-touching anthology, The Forgiveness Handbook is highly recommended for personal spiritual growth and public library collections.

The Christian Studies Shelf

On Exchange and Usury
Thomas Cajetan, author
Patrick T. Brannan, translator
Christian's Library Press
98 E. Fulton Street, Grand Rapids, MI 49503
Bob Todd Publicity
9781938948640, $9.95,

The two treatises comprising "On Exchange and Usury" provides insight into the banking industry of the early modern era from the perspective of one of the most significant Christian theologians of the period. In the first treatise, Thomas Cajetan carefully argues for a use of bills of exchange on the money market (real exchange) that does not run afoul of the church's condemnation of usury. In the second treatise, Cajetan handles several questions on the nature of usury and outlines the obligations of those who are involved in certain lending practices. Ably translated into English by Patrick T. Brannan, "On Exchange and Usury" is an informative, 142 page seminal work of impressive and articulate scholarship, making it an enduringly important contribution to our understanding of the theological issues involved with the lending and investing of money. "On Exchange and Usury" is especially recommended for academic library History of Economics reference collections and supplemental studies lists.

The Travel Shelf

The World: A Traveller's Guide to the Planet
Lonely Planet Publications
150 Linden Street, Oakland CA 94607
9781743600658, $29.99,

Lonely Planet is a premier publisher of instructive travel guides to cities and countries around the world. Now in "The World: A Traveller's Guide to the Planet", a single volume, 960 page compendium, Lonely Planet has provided an alphabetically presented travel guide to every country on Earth from Afghanistan to Zimbabwe. Beginning with invaluable general 'Need to Know' tips for any world traveler, "The World: A Traveller's Guide to the Planet" lays out everything a visitor to a particular country would need to know about where to go, what to see, and what to do, when planning an itinerary. Beautifully illustrated throughout with full color photography and maps, "The World: A Traveller's Guide to the Planet" is the ultimate travel guide for business, for vacationing, or simply for browsing through as an armchair traveler. Also available in a Kindle edition ($16.19), "The World: A Traveller's Guide to the Planet" would make a popular addition to any personal, professional, or community library travel guide collection.

Thailand's Best Street Food
Chawadee Nualkhair
Tuttle Publishing
364 Innovation Drive, North Clarendon, VT 05759-9436
9780804844666, $15.95,

Compiled with succinct informative commentary by Chawadee Nualkhair (a food writer living in Bangkok), "Thailand's Best Street Food: The Complete Guide to Streetside Dining in Bangkok, Chiang Mai, Phuket and Other Areas" is a profusely illustrated, 160 page, vinyl bound paperback providing everything any visitor would want or need to know about sampling local street food. Informed and informative, "Thailand's Best Street Food" details directions on how to find a particular food stall; provides street maps for each sector presented; identifies each food stall's specialty; notes serving options, beverages, and any special extras; as well as whether or not seating is available. Enhanced with the inclusion of recipes for the twelve most popular Thai street food dishes, "Thailand's Best Street Food" is a thoroughly 'user friendly' guide that is enthusiastically recommended for anyone visiting Thailand for business or for pleasure!

The Cookbook Shelf

Anne de la Forest
Jacqui Small LLP
c/o Dalyn Miller Public Relations
9781909342608 $29.99

Frites is a cookbook devoted to variants of the widely beloved French Fries, also known as "chips" in England; the general term "frites" is used to encompass a wide variety of fried foods. Recipes branch out beyond traditional American French Fries / English Chips / Belgian Frites into a medly of delicious delights, including Carmelized Honey Frites, Asparagus Frites, Comte Cheese Frites, Pumpkin Frites, Banana and Brown Sugar Frites, and much more, including sauces ranging from homemade ketchup to more exotic aioli, soy, bleu cheese, or fresh herb sauces. Color photography illustrates the 30+ recipes of this "must-have" for fried food gourmets!

100 Animal Cookies
Lisa Snyder
250 Wireless Boulevard, Hauppauge, NY 11788
9781438005225, $17.99,

Compiled by cookie expert Lisa Snyder, "100 Animal Cookies: A Super Cute Menagerie to Decorate Step-by-Step" is a profusely illustrated, 144 page compendium showcasing thoroughly 'kitchen cook friendly', step-by-step recipes for making animal cookies that are as tasty as they are colorful. The animal cookies are arranged and presented in six major sections or themes: Farms & Pets; Garden Critters; Woodland Creatures, Ocean & ice Animals; Safari, Desert, & Jungle Animals; Prehistoric Animals. Very highly recommended for family and community library cookbook collections, it should be noted that "100 Animal Cookies: A Super Cute Menagerie to Decorate Step-by-Step" is enhanced with the inclusion of a list of suppliers and a useful index.

Bison Delights
Habeeb Salloum
University of Regina Press
University of Regina
3737 Wascana Parkway, Regina, Saskatchewan, Canada, S4S 0A2
9780889772151, $29.95,

"Bison Delights: Middle Eastern Cuisine, Western Style" is a beautifully illustrated, 169 page compendium showcasing a cornucopia of kitchen cook friendly recipes for elegant middle eastern dishes adapted to a western palate -- especially those utilizing bison meat. Each recipe is graced with an introductory commentary providing a frame of reference for that particular dish. The recipes themselves range from Basic Couscous; Kabab Bil 'Asal (Honey Kebabs); Shawrabat Fool Wa Laham (Bean-Vegetable-Meat Soup); and Al-Qidra Bilawz (Almond Bison Stew); to Ragheef Jamus (Bison Meat Loaf); Laham Ma Laban (Ground Bison with Yogurt); and Maqlooba (Upside-Down Eggplant and Bison). Unique and uncommon, "Bison Delights: Middle Eastern Cuisine, Western Style" would make a very special and highly recommended addition to personal, professional, family, and community library cookbook collections.

Jean-Paul Grappe
Fitzhenry & Whiteside
195 Allstate Parkway, Markham, Ontario, Canada L3R 4T8
9781554552870, $22.95,

Combined by culinary expert Jean-Paul Grappe, "Berries And Other Small Fruit" is an impressive and beautifully illustrated collection of sixty wonderful recipes featuring all manner of berries and fruits. The recipes include those for making fruit wine, jams, jellies, soups, crepes, and even main dishes such as Grilled Swordfish with Blueberries. From blackberries, strawberries, and raspberries, to apricots, figs, plums, and currants, this assemblage of thoroughly 'kitchen cook friendly' recipes will produce wonderful dishes to please any palate, satisfy any appetite, and enhance any dining occasion. "Berries And Other Small Fruit" is enthusiastically recommended as a guaranteed popular addition to personal, family, and community library cookbook collections.

Jewish Soul Food: From Minsk to Marrakesh
Janna Gur
c/o Random House
1745 Broadway, 17th floor, New York, NY 10019
9780805243086, $35.00,

Compiled and presented with commentary by Janna Gur, "Jewish Soul Food: From Minsk to Marrakesh, More Than 100 Unforgettable Dishes Updated for Today's Kitchen" is a beautifully illustrated, 240 page compendium showcasing palate pleasing, appetite satisfying, kitchen cook friendly, authentic Jewish cuisine. The individual recipes are deftly organized into Starters, Salads, and Noshes; Cosy Soups for Chilly Nights; Meatballs, Fish Balls, and Stuffed Vegetables; Braises, Pot Roasts, and Ragus; Meatless Mains; Savory Pastries; Shabbat State of Mind; Cakes Cookies, and Desserts. The recipes themselves range from Homemade Pickled Herring; Passover Green Chicken Soup; Mixed Stuffed Vegetables in Pomegranate Sauce; and Beef Tagine with Dried Fruits and Nuts; to Spinach Flan; Sambousek (Chickpea-Filled Pastry Pockets); Jerusalem Sweet and Spicy Noodle Kugel; Apple and Raisin Studel; and Mofleta (Sweet Pancake Stacks). Enhanced with the inclusion of a two page 'Mail Order Sources for Specialty Ingredients' and a useful Index, "Jewish Soul Food: From Minsk to Marrakesh, More Than 100 Unforgettable Dishes Updated for Today's Kitchen" is enthusiastically recommended for personal, professional, family, and community library Ethnic Cookbook collections.

Field Peas to Foie Gras
Jennifer Hill Booker
Pelican Publishing Company
1000 Burmaster Street
Gretna, LA 70053-2246
9781455619726 $26.95

Field Peas to Foie Gras: Southern Recipes with a French Accent collects more than one hundred recipes from Jennifer Hill Booker, who draws influence from both her culinary training at Le Cordon Bleu in Paris, France and her upbringing on a Mississippi family farm. These dishes embody traditional Southern home cooking with French panache, and are sure to delight aficionados of either or both food preparation styles! Dishes include Green Tomato Cha Cha (a type of zesty salad), Glazed Turnips with Pearl Onions & Brown Butter, Mackerel Croquettes, Scotch Eggs with Mustard Sauce, Southern Fried Chicken with Cream Gravy, Coconut Christmas Cake, and much more. Full-color photography enriches this sumptuous recipe treasury! Also highly recommended is Kit Wohl's "New Orleans Classic Creole Recipes" (9781455618798, $16.95), which is packed cover to cover with restaurant-quality Creole cuisine, easy-to-follow constructions, and mouth-watering color photography.

The Music Shelf

Stealing All Transmissions: A Secret History of the Clash
Randal Doane
PM Press
PO Box 23912, Oakland, CA 94623
9781629630298, $15.95,

The Clash were an English punk rock band that formed in 1976 as part of the original wave of British punk. Along with punk, their music incorporated elements of reggae, dub, funk, and rockabilly. For most of their recording career the Clash consisted of Joe Strummer (lead vocals, rhythm guitar), Mick Jones (lead guitar, vocals), Paul Simonon (bass guitar, vocals) and Nicky "Topper" Headon (drums, percussion). Headon left the group in 1982, and internal friction led to Jones' departure the following year. The group continued with new members, but finally disbanded in early 1986. "Stealing All Transmissions: A Secret History of the Clash" is a 192 page detailed history of one of punk rock's most successful bands and includes original interviews with key figures from the New York 'punk scene' and a concluding analysis of how music is listened to today and the impact music has upon the written word. Informed and informative, "Stealing All Transmissions: A Secret History of the Clash" is a "must read" for fans of the punk rock movement and an important addition to academic library 20th Century Popular Music reference collections. It should be noted that "Stealing All Transmissions: A Secret History of the Clash" is also available in a Kindle edition ($7.99).

The Gaming Shelf

Minecraft Recipes For Dummies
Jesse Stay & Thomas Stay
For Dummies
c/o Wiley Professional Trade Group
111 River Street, Hoboken, NJ 07030-5774
9781118968277, $12.95,

Minecraft is a sandbox independent video game originally created by Swedish programmer Markus "Notch" Persson and later developed and published by the Swedish company Mojang since 2009. The creative and building aspects of Minecraft allow players to build constructions out of textured cubes in a 3D procedurally generated world. Other activities in the game include exploration, gathering resources, crafting, and combat. Multiple gameplay modes are available, including survival modes where the player must acquire resources to build the world and maintain health, a creative mode where players have unlimited resources to build and the ability to fly, and an adventure mode where players play custom maps created by other players. "Minecraft Recipes For Dummies" is a 224 page compendium comprised of instructions for Minecraft players with respect to making a shelter and protecting themselves; crafting tools, armor, and weapons; finding the blocks needed to create items; quickly repair blocks that have been destroyed, and more. Illustrated throughout in full color, "Minecraft Recipes For Dummies" will prove to be an invaluable and indispensable instructional reference book for novice and experienced Minecraft players alike!

The Health/Medicine Shelf

Delavier's Women's Strength Training Anatomy Workouts
Frederic Delavier and Michael Gundill
Human Kinetics Publishers, Inc.
PO Box 5076, Champaign, IL 61820-5076
9781450466035 $19.95

Delavier's Women's Strength Training Anatomy Workouts is an in-depth resource packed with 157 exercises and suggested workout plans, specifically grounded in female anatomy. For use at home or the gym, Delavier's Women's Strength Training Anatomy Workouts pairs detailed instructions with demonstrative color photographs, and anatomical drawings that clearly show the muscles being used. Women of all ages and fitness levels can benefit from this practical-minded guide, which can be tailored to one's needs whether for casual conditioning or athletic strength training. Highly recommended!

Your Best Pregnancy
Jill Hoefs & Denise Jagroo
Demos Health
11 West 42nd Street, 15th Floor, New York, NY 10036
9781936303618, $19.95, 240pp,

Drawing upon their expertise as physical therapists with over twenty years of combined experience, "Jill Hoefs and Denise Jagroo have expertly collaborative to produce "Your Best Pregnancy : The Ultimate Guide to Easing the Aches, Pains, and Uncomfortable Side Effects During Each Stage of Your Pregnancy", a thoroughly 'user friendly' instruction guide to helping women ease sore feet, aching backs, incessant peeing, and many other uncomfortable conditions, Your Best Pregnancy provides simple solutions and easy exercises to help women feel their best from head to toe. Through detailed photographs, illustrations, and down-to-earth advice that is both medically substantiated as well as easy to understand, you will learn how to: Treat the most uncomfortable symptoms during pregnancy, such as back and shoulder pain, bladder issues, night cramps, sciatica, swelling, and varicose veins; Maintain a healthy pregnancy, even while on bed rest; Correctly strengthen the pelvic floor and core to prevent diastasis recti; Nurse, lift, and care for a baby (or babies) using proper body mechanics to avoid strain and injury. Also available in a Kindle edition ($18.00), "Your Best Pregnancy : The Ultimate Guide to Easing the Aches, Pains, and Uncomfortable Side Effects During Each Stage of Your Pregnancy" is very highly recommended for women who find themselves pregnant, and would prove to be an enduringly popular addition to community library Health & Medicine reference collections.

The Graphic Novel Shelf

World Triggers 1
Daisuke Ashihara
Viz Media LLC
1355 Market Street, Suite 200
San Francisco CA 94103
9781421577647 $9.99

The first graphic novel of World Triggers kicks off a brand new series of black-and-white shonen manga (action-packed Japanese comics, suitable for teen and adult readers). A mysterious alternate dimension threatens Earth with sporadic invasions of seemingly invincible monsters. Beings from the other dimension are called "Neighbors", and Earth's only defense against them are the elite warriors of Border, who use repurposed Neighbor technology to fight back! Osamu Mikumo is a trainee Border agent, and what he lacks in skill he makes up for with idealism and drive. But his already precarious daily life at school is turned completely on edge when he encounters Yuma. Yuma is a transfer student who seems oddly unfamiliar with not only Japanese customs, but also human culture in general. Yuma is also a Neighbor, yet despite his coldly logical sense of ethics and reasoning, he appears far more human than the slavering monsters that periodically threaten Tokyo! Could there be more to the Neighbors than Border's propaganda purports? And can two people on opposite sides of an interdimensional war become friends? A treat for fans of shonen manga and sci-fi excitement, World Triggers is highly recommended.

Honey Blood 1
Miko Mitsuki
Viz Media LLC
1355 Market Street, Suite 200
San Francisco CA 94103
9781421573373 $9.99

The debut graphic novel of Honey Blood begins a series of black-and-white shojo manga (relationship-focused Japanese comics, suitable for teen and adult readers) about falling in love with a possible vampire! A girl at Hinata Sorazono's school has been attacked, apparently by a bloodsucking monster, and everyone is at edge. Hinata has never believed in vampires, but her new neighbor Junya Tokinaga certainly appears suspicious - wearing clothing and styles from centuries in the past, even telling her that the taste of her blood is sweet. Hinata finds herself attracted to Junya, but could he truly be a blood-drinking fiend, or the perpetrator of the mysterious attacks? Also highly recommended for vampire fans is "Vampire Knight 19" (9781421573915, $9.99), the final volume of a shojo manga series about a tense, barely preserved peace between humans and pureblooded vampires, and the star-crossed love affairs between the supernatural protectors charged with guarding the innocent!

The Audiobook Shelf

The Secret Sky
Atia Abawi, author
Ariana Delawari and Assaf Cohen, narrators
Recorded Books, LLC
270 Skip Jack Road
Prince Frederick, MD 20678
9781490627403 $77.75 CD / $70.00 eAudio

Afghan-descent author Atia Abawi presents The Secret Sky: A Novel of Forbidden Love in Afghanistan, the unabridged audiobook rendition of a fictional saga loosely based on people she met during her nearly five years as work as a foreign correspondent in Afghanistan. Fatima is a Hazara girl; Samiullah is a Pashtun boy. Each has been raised to be loyal to their own family, tribe, village, traditions, and religion. Neither intended to fall in love with an outsider... yet a star-crossed romance blossoms and changes everything. Their respective families and cultures strive to pull them apart, and the threat of the murderous Taliban hangs heavy. A saga of betrayal, love, and omnipresent threat, The Secret Sky is truly unforgettable. 7 CDs, 7.75 hours.

David Rosenfelt, author
Grover Gardner, narrator
Listen & Live Audio
PO Box 817, Roseland, NJ 07068
9781593166663 $29.95

Hounded is the unabridged audiobook rendition of a mystery in author David Rosenfelt's Andy Carpenter series. In Hounded, Andy's policeman friend Pete Stanton calls in a surprising favor. Ex-convict Danny Diza has been found murdered, and Andy needs to take care of Diza's four-year-old son and pet basset hound, to keep both from being put into "the system". This is stressful enough, but Andy's skill as a defense attorney will be put to the test when Pete comes under suspicion for the murder! Hounded is both a legal thriller and an emotionally moving story about family (and pets who are like family), highly recommended. 6 CDs, 7 hours.

Places to Stay the Night
Ann Hood, author
Eva Kantor, narrator
Brilliance Corporation
PO Box 887
Grand Haven, MI 49417
9781491540213 $19.99

Places to Stay the Night is the unabridged audiobook adaptation of an unusual romance novel, featuring two protagonists with families and a lifetime of emotional baggage. Tom Harper is left at a complete loss when his wife of eighteen years, discontented with ordinary suburban life, walks out on the family. He doesn't know what to do for his trouble-prone son, or his jaded daughter. Then Renata Handy enters the lives of the Harper family. Renata has left Manhattan to look after her terminally ill eight-year-old daughter. Her old high school crush Tom and his reeling family form an unexpected haven during dark times. Places to Stay the Night is heart-touching, soulful, and unforgettable. 9 CDs, 10 hours 2 min. Also highly recommended is The Songmaster by Di Morrissey (9781486216604, $19.99, 12 CDs, 14 hours 30 min.), an interwoven saga about connections to ancient rock paintings in the Kimberly bring a disparate group of travelers together, changing their lives forever.

The Hot Zone
Jayne Ann Krentz writing as Jayne Castle, author
Barbara Rosenblat, narrator
Recorded Books, LLC
270 Skip Jack Road
Prince Frederick, MD 20678
9781470368241 $92.75 CD / $83.00 eAudio

The Hot Zone: A Rainshadow Novel is the unabridged audiobook rendition of a never-before-published romance novel by Jayne Ann Krentz (writing as Jayne Castle). Sedona has taken a new job managing a small hotel and tavern on Rainshadow, but as the Halloween holiday approaches, a bizarre event in the catacombs below has brought an uproarious group of ghost hunters to her inn's doorstep! Sedona's ex appears on the island, claiming he wants to get back together, and the new Guild boss Cyrus Jones has his own, manipulative plans for her. Superbly performed by Barbara Rosenblat (whose eight Audie Awards and 40 Earphones Awards prompted AudioFile magazine to name her one of the Golden Voices of the Twentieth Century), The Hot Zone is a tempestuous, sensational story of kindled passion, highly recommended especially for connoisseurs of the genre. 8 CDs, 8.75 hours.

Marvel Astonishing X-Men: Gifted
Peter David, et al.
Graphic Audio
4940 Hampden Lane, Suite 300, Bethesda, MD 20814
9781628510829, $19.99,

A full bodied 'theatre of the mind' experience from beginning to end, "Marvel Astonishing X-Men: Gifted" features truly impressive and flawless production values that include the use of sound effects and music to enhance the gifted performances of an extraordinarily gifted cast. Welcome to the Marvel Universe of mutants vs. non-mutants, of a team of superheroes called the X-Men, of an alien attempting to create (in collaboration with a human researcher) a "cure" for being mutant -- and the havoc that creates within the mutant community. Based on a graphic novel by Joss Whedon and John Cassaday, this 5 hour, 5 CD audio book is a "must" for the legions of X-Men fans and will prove to be an enduringly popular addition to personal and community library audio book collections!

The Music CD Shelf

Singing Lights
Tony Duncan and Darrin Yazzie
Canyon Records Productions
3131 West Clarendon Avenue
Phoenix, AZ 85017

Native American flutist Tony Duncan and guitarist Darrin Yazzie have collaborated to present Singing Lights (49 min. 33 sec.), an original album embodying the spirit of the hoop dance with flowing musical arrangements. A timeless tribute to the sacred in nature, and in the bonds of love that families share, Singing Lights is an exceptional listening experience. The tracks are "Where the Wind Blows" (3:29), "Singing Lights" (4:08), "Our Daughters" (4:44), "Coyote Dances" (4:01), "Sedona Sunrise 2" (3:57), "Sacred Cave" (4:17), "Mother's Beauty" (4:21), "Naiche ('My Son')" (3:53), "Rhythms of Sunrise" (3:48), "Together We Danced" (3:39), "Nakai ('Whippoorwill')" (4:34), "Beauty Surrounds Me" (3:27). Also highly recommended for connoisseurs of Native American music is Breaking Boundaries ($14.98, 45 min. 59 sec.), an album of Pow-Wow songs recorded live at Red Mountain.

The DVD Shelf

Wisconsin Rising
A film by Sam Mayfield
PM Press
PO Box 23912, Oakland, CA 94623
c/o Independent Publishers Group (dist.)
814 North Franklin Street, Chicago, IL 60610

Wisconsin Rising is a pro-union documentary about the largest sustained worker's resistance movement in American history. In 2011, newly elected Republican Governor Scott Walker spearheaded and signed a controversial law that stripped collective bargaining power from Wisconsin's public employees, undercutting eight decades of labor union power. Wisconsin's public fought back. Wisconsinites peacefully occupied the state capitol for weeks in protest. Over one million signatures were collected to force a recall election of Scott Walker. Only two governors in American history had been previously subjected to a recall election; Scott Walker became the third, and the first governor in American history to survive a recall. Wisconsin Rising explores these dramatic events, and makes a fascinating addition to DVD collections with a focus on labor history in general, and Wisconsin history in particular. 60 min., not rated.

Toy Train Revue 2
TM Books & Video
PO Box 9228
Michigan City, IN 46361
9781936890835 $19.99

Toy Train Revue 2 (90 min.) is the second installment of TM Books & Video's twenty-first century revival of the DVD-magazine especially for toy train enthusiasts. Featuring 60 minutes of all-new high-definition, widescreen video footage, as well as 30 minutes of highlights from the original Toy Train Revue 2 (released in 1991), Toy Train Revue 2 includes a tour of various hobbyists applying realistic ground cover, running interconnected layouts, emulating Century O gauge switches from the 50s, and much more. Dedicated hobbyists will thoroughly enjoy Toy Train Revue 2. As of this writing, the Toy Train Revue DVD-magazine has four separate installments ($19.99 each); part 4 is a special Christmas edition!

Element series
Anchor Bay Entertainment
2401 West Big Beaver Road, Suite 200
Troy, MI 48084-3304
$14.98 each

Two DVDs in the accessible Element series each offer multiple yoga programs to enhance personal fitness, strength, and flexibility. Daily Yoga (88 min.) offers two programs, an energetic morning yoga routine to help the user prepare for the day, and an evening routine to calm down for restful sleep at night. 5 Day Yoga (94 min.) offers five different 15-minute yoga sessions that can be mixed or matched to serve personal needs: strength & stamina, energy & flexibility, core power, stretch & restore, and stress relief & meditation. A certified yoga instructor guides viewers through each program, in these excellent, user-friendly DVDs.

Element: Belly Dance
Jacqui Lalita
Anchor Bay Entertainment
2401 West Big Beaver Road, Suite 200
Troy, MI 48084-3304

Professional dancer and instructor Jacqui Lalita presents Element: Belly Dance, a DVD designed to teach women of all ages how to belly dance to develop fitness, flexibility, sensuality, and renewed energy. The DVD segments are "Belly Dance Foundations", which teaches basic moves to those new to the art; "Slow & Sensual Belly Dance Toning", which builds muscle strength with moves such as circles, undulations, and figure 8s; and "Belly Dance Burn", which is all about improving strength and stamina through workout bursts. Element: Belly Dance is an excellent way to become acquainted with belly dance for fun as well for healthy living. 63 min.

Just Walk: Walk Off Fat Fast
Leslie Sansone
Anchor Bay Entertainment
2401 West Big Beaver Road, Suite 200
Troy, MI 48084-3304

Just Walk: Walk Off Fat Fast is an exercise DVD accessible to people of all ages and fitness levels. The goal is to energize oneself and burn fat through an energetic style of walking, that can incorporate slimming and toning moves. Fitness expert Leslie Sansone hosts three different walk-workouts - the 20-minute easy burn, the 30-minute big burn, and the 40-minute super burn. No special equipment is required to fully benefit from Just Walk, only a positive attitude and a willingness to get out of that armchair! Highly recommended. 95 min.

The Theatre/Cinema/TV Shelf

Voltron From Days of Long Ago
Brian Smith, Marc Morrell, Joshua Bernard, and Jacob Chabot
Viz Media LLC
1355 Market Street, Suite 200
San Francisco CA 94103
9781421575407 $29.99

Voltron From Days of Long Ago: A Thirtieth Anniversary Celebration is a full-color, coffee-table book compendium of characters, giant robots, and lore from the classic Japanese animated television show Voltron. Debuting on the airwaves in 1984, Voltron was a pop culture sensation in America as well, sparking a hot-selling line of toys and even other merchandise such as lunchboxes. Voltron From Days of Long Ago is especially notable for its reconstruction of the story and mythology of the Voltron universe, from legends about Voltron's origin to profiles of Voltron pilots and their nefarious enemies, the conquest-driven Drule empire. Voltron From Days Long Ago is truly a labor of love, and a "must-have" for lifelong fans of the show!

The Mystery/Suspense Shelf

Swann's Lake of Despair
Charles Salzberg
c/o Cengage Learning, Inc.
200 First Stamford Place, Stamford, CT 06902
c/o JKS Communications
9781432829360 $25.95

Award-nominated mystery author Charles Salzberg presents Swann's Lake of Despair, part of his crime novel series featuring the handsome and suave detective Henry Swann. Financial desperation pushes Swann to become partners with the less-than-reputable, less-than-amicable Goldblatt, a disbarred lawyer who offers to provide leads and muscle if Swann will get out there and do the footwork. Swann's first cases involve a lost diary from the Jazz Age, stolen photographs of Marilyn Monroe, and a writer at odds with his clandestine lover. Beneath the surface of these seemingly simple cases lurks a deadly threat, and if Swann doesn't look sharp he might become its next victim! Dashes of witty humor spike this hard-boiled mystery, especially recommended for connoisseurs of the genre.

The Computer Shelf

Murach's Oracle SQL and PL/SQL for Developers, second edition
Joel Murach
Mike Murach & Associates
4340 North Knoll Avenue
Fresno, CA 93722
9781890774806 $54.50

Now in an updated second edition, Murach's Oracle SQL and PL/SQL for Developers is the definitive self-teaching tool and reference for the SQL and PL/SQL programming languages, which are particularly valuable for working with Oracle databases. An understanding of the fundamentals of computer programming is presumed, as chapters walk the reader through how to code efficient SQL statements. Murach's Oracle SQL and PL/SQL for Developers was created by expert programmers and teachers, expressly for application developers and anyone interested in learning SQL. Exercises and sample code clarify the principles of this first-rate resource.

The Hobby Shelf

Guide to Narrow Gauge Modeling
Tony Koester
Kalmbach Books
21027 Crossroads Circle
Waukesha, WI 53187-1612
9781627001502 $21.99

Illustrated with full-color photography throughout, Guide to Narrow Gauge Modeling is a hands-on hobby guide to making model train layouts that superbly emulate the narrow-gauge railroads that have historically operated in remote wilderness terrain. Chapters discuss the history and operation of actual narrow-gauge railroads as well as techniques to plan and design an evocative narrow-gauge model train layout. (In this context, "narrow gauge" refers to railroads where the rails tended to be spaced only two or three feet apart, rather than the standard "wide gauge" of four to eight and half feet). As much an educational tour of these function-driven railroads as it is a how-to manual, Guide to Narrow Gauge Modeling will appeal to general train enthusiasts and model railroad builders alike.

The Fiction Shelf

A Christmas Gift
Kathi Macias
New Hope Publishers
PO Box 830711, Birmingham, AL 35283-0711
9781596694163 $15.99

Multiple award-winning author Kathi Macias presents A Christmas Gift, an original novel of faith, endurance, danger, and love. The story follows Julia, a widow pained by the loss of her husband, who seeks a fresh start teaching in Chiapas, Mexico. As the days come closer to Christmas, she becomes aware of the growing mutual attraction between herself and a local pastor. Terrifying kidnappers jeopardize her life and the lives of others; the nightmarish trial truly puts her belief in God to the test, in this powerful story of self-sacrifice, and the enduring flame of hope.

The Needlecraft Shelf

Hexagon Happenings
Carolyn Forster
Landauer Corporation
3100 NW 101st Street, Suite A
Urbandale, Iowa 50322
9781935726661 $27.95

Ideal for intermediate to advanced quilters, Hexagon Happenings is a step-by-step guide to crafting warm, beautiful quilts with hexagon techniques. Over 200 color photos and diagrams help teach the reader how to cut half-hexagons, partial hexagons, diamonds, half-diamonds, triangles, and kites with the hexagon template; combine hexagons with other shapes; sew hexagons by machine or hand; sew hexagons and other shapes into rows which are then sewn together; and more. Fifteen quilts and projects make Hexagon Happenings a "hands-on" guide, perfect for handcrafting memorable, useful gifts for the holiday season!

The Education Shelf

The K&W Guide to Colleges for Students with Learning Differences, twelfth edition
Marybeth Kravets, MA and Imy F. Wax, MS
The Princeton Review
c/o Random House Inc.
1745 Broadway, New York NY 10019
9780804125574 $29.99

Now in an updated twelfth edition, The K&W Guide to Colleges for Students with Learning Differences is a resource for selecting the right college for one's needs. Its pages profile 350 schools that have programs or services especially for students with ADHD or learning disabilities. Packed with information about admissions requirements, graduation policies, available support services, procedures concerning course waivers or substitutions, and more for each school, The K&W Guide to Colleges for Students with Learning Differences is an excellent starting point when planning out one's future.

The Pets/Wildlife Shelf

How to Make Your Cat an Internet Celebrity
Patricia Carlin, author
Dustin Fenstermacher, photographer
Quirk Books
215 Church Street, Philadelphia PA 19106
9781594746796 $12.95

While (almost) no one should reasonably expect retire on the proceeds from cat videos, How to Make Your Cat an Internet Celebrity is a handy resource for getting Fluffy to contribute to the cost of his kitty food. Though it adopts a comedic tone, How to Make Your Cat an Internet Celebrity is quite practical as a guide to staging cat videos for maximum audience appeal, and hopefully financial revenue. Topics include tailoring videos to take advantage of the personality of one's cat (is he/she a daredevil? A clown? A lazy bum? A wacko?), filming aesthetics, suggested props ranging from basic string or catnip to the Roomba or a Christmas tree, and much more. Technical details about operating video equipment or using computer software to edit filmed footage are kept to a bare minimum, but there is no limit to the humor, which shines through in the illustrative (and annotated!) color photographs of cats in bemusing situations. Cat lovers everywhere will enjoy browsing How to Make Your Cat an Internet Celebrity from cover to cover!

The Fantasy/SciFi Shelf

Fire in the Blood
Erin M. Evans
Wizards of the Coast
1600 Lind Ave. SW
Renton, WA 98057
9780786965298 $27.95

Award-winning author Erin M. Evans presents Fire in the Blood, fourth in the "Brimstone Angels" series of epic fantasy novels set in the Dungeons & Dragons pen-and-paper role-playing game world of the Forgotten Realms. The Forest Kingdom of Cormyr is at war with Shadovar; its king is ailing, its Crown Prince has gone missing, and his heir mysteriously falls prey to sickness. In the middle of the intrigue is Farideh, still reeling from the repercussions of a devil's bargain. She is loathe to use the powers gifted to her by the god of sin, yet they may be the only weapon she has ready for the crisis! A saga of political intrigue and battlefield bloodshed, featuring a protagonist that must wage a war within as surely as a war without, Fire in the Blood is a captivating page-turner through and through.

The Political Science Shelf

One Vote
Ben Carson, MD with Candy Carson
Tyndale House Publishers
351 Executive Drive
Carol Stream, IL 60188
c/o Marshall, Nappi & Schulz Publicity
9781496406323 $5.99

One Vote is a brief, pocket-sized book about responsibly exercising the most fundamental privilege and duty of American citizenship - the right to vote. Retired neurosurgeon, Washington Times columnist, and Fox News contributor Dr. Ben Carson distills the basics about voting into this accessible guide. One Vote covers why every American citizen's vote matters; how to ask the right questions about candidates, parties, and voting records; determine the candidates and political parties whose values align with one's own outlook; and learn how one's own senator and congressman have voted in the past. An impassioned call to action, One Vote's message is needed more than ever as governmental gridlock threatens to increase voter apathy. Highly recommended, especially for public library shelves.

The Sports Shelf

Chalky White's The 7 Secrets of Skiing
Chalky White, author
Linda Guerrette, photographer
Privately Published
c/o News & Experts (publicity)
9780578090566 $29.95

Written by a world-class professional ski instructor, Chalky White's The 7 Secrets of Skiing: A Proven Systematic Route into the World of Advanced Skiing is a guide to improving one's performance on the snowy slopes. Although created especially for intermediate to advanced skiers, The 7 Secrets of Skiing will also prove useful to beginners. Chapters emphasize the importance of balance, and offer checklist-style step-by-step exercises and recommendations for perfecting one's form. Color photography offers a visual demonstration of techniques described in-depth. An absolute "must" for serious skiing enthusiasts!

The Photography Shelf

Agua Nacida
Hugh Arnold
Merrell Publishers
38 High Avenue, 4th floor
Nyack, New York 10960
9781858946368 $65.00

Agua Nacida ("Underwater Nudes") is a spellbinding, coffee-table photography book showcasing both black-and-white and full-color images of slender women skinny-dipping, swimming, diving, or posing in crystal-clear water. Aside from a brief foreword, there is almost no text; the spellbinding images speak for themselves (the scant text is in English, though). The nudity is quite tasteful and artistic, sometimes masked by shadows but but absolutely not censored. An inset ribbon bookmark enhances this splendid celebration of the beauty in both nature and the human body. Agua Nacida is an absolutely unforgettable addition to photography shelves.

The Wisconsin Shelf

Bibliography of Metropolitan Milwaukee
Ann M. Graff, Amanda I. Seligman, Margo Anderson
Marquette University Press
PO Box 3141, Milwaukee, WI 53201-3141
9780874620849, $25.00,

Milwaukee is the largest city in the State of Wisconsin, the 31st most populous city in the United States, and 39th most populous region in the United States. It is the county seat of Milwaukee County and is located on the southwestern shore of Lake Michigan. With a population of 600,000+, the City of Milwaukee is the main cultural and economic center of the Milwaukee - Racine - Waukesha Metropolitan Area with a population of more than two million. This ranks the region as the 29th most populous Combined Statistical Area of the United States. In 2012, Milwaukee was listed as a gamma global city by the Globalization and World Cities Research Network. Compiled by the team of Ann M. Graff, Amanda I. Seligman, Margo Anderson, "Bibliography of Metropolitan Milwaukee" is a 345 page compendium comprising 19 thematic chapters that are further organized by topic, The "Bibliography of Metropolitan Milwaukee" includes resources for Milwaukee, Ozaukee, Washington, and Waukesha counties. Subjects covered include places, biographies, race and ethnicity, politics, business, the economy, charity, religion, the arts, architecture, recreation, health, gender, the natural environment, media, infrastructure, bibliographies, and archives. "Bibliography of Metropolitan Milwaukee" offers the most comprehensive bibliographical resources about the Milwaukee area ever produced and should be considered a core addition to academic library U.S. demographic reference collections in general, and Wisconsin demographic information collections in particular.

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

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