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Wisconsin Bookwatch

Volume 8, Number 3 March 2013 Home | WBW Index

Table of Contents

Reviewer's Choice Humor Shelf Automotive Shelf
Literary Studies Shelf Photography Shelf Christian Studies Shelf
Judaic Studies Shelf Islamic Studies Shelf Fiction Shelf
Mystery/Suspense Shelf Pets/Wildlife Shelf Money/Finance Shelf
Poetry Shelf Memoir Shelf Crafts Shelf
Fantasy/SciFi Shelf Travel Shelf Sports Shelf
Biography Shelf Education Shelf Business Shelf
Religion/Spirituality Shelf Art Shelf Health/Medicine Shelf
Technology Shelf Cookbook Shelf Relationship Shelf
Jobs/Career Shelf Parenting Shelf Music Shelf
Fishing Shelf Comix/Graphic Novel Shelf Audiobook Shelf
Music CD Shelf DVD Shelf Metaphysical Studies Shelf
Self-Help Shelf Civil War Shelf Human Sexuality Shelf
Genealogy Shelf Theatre/Cinema/TV Shelf Political Science Shelf

Reviewer's Choice

Budget Savvy Diva's Guide to Slashing Your Grocery Bill by 50% or More
Sara Lundberg, author
Ulysses Press
P.O. Box 3440, Berkeley, CA 94703
9781612431253, $12.95,

"Budget Savvy Diva's Guide to Slashing Your Grocery Bill by 50% or More" is today's consumer's bible for ways to help make ends meet in the grocery store. Filled with great tips on shopping strategies, menu planning, creating and sticking to a realistic food budget, using coupons, creating a stockpile, and much more, the Guide includes a final bonus of 40 pages (a whole chapter) of budget savvy recipes to help beef up nutrition deliciously while sticking to your budget. Key ideas like "eat seasonally, buy locally" are presented along with creative approaches to shopping and incorporating kids into your shopping and food preparation tasks. "Budget Savvy Diva's Guide to Slashing Your Grocery Bill by 50% or More" closes with creative approaches to using leftovers. This in addition to the secret tricks and clever tips for eating great and saving money incorporated throughout the Guide make this a great purchase for every careful shopper.

The International Bank of Bob
Bob Harris
Walker & Company
175 Fifth Avenue
New York, NY 10010
9780802777515, $26.00,

A small loan can turn out to make all the difference in the world. "The International Bank of Bob: Connecting Our Worlds One $25 Kiva Loan At a Time" is a thought-provoking memoir from Bob Harris, who shares his journey of running a business of microloans all around the world, helping people get that little bit of money they needed to get going, and sharing the personal stories that he had learned in his life journeys all over the world. "The International Bank of Bob" is a curious story of how a small helping hand doesn't have to ultimately cost anything and can promote success and goodwill the world over.

The Quotable Henry Ford
Michele Wehrwein Albion, editor
University Press of Florida
15 Northwest 15th Street
Gainesville, FL 32611-2079
9780813044057, $24.95,

You need a sharp tongue to thrive in the world of business, and it was true even in Henry Ford's time. "The Quotable Henry Ford" is a collection of snippets from the audacious, brilliant, and enormously successful inventor's mind, with his unique ideas on education, business, practice, race, politics, and other topics. An even-handed approach with photography throughout, for those who want a better look into this lauded and condemned mind, "The Quotable Henry Ford" is not to be missed.

Joy Boosters
Missy Buchanan
Upper Room Books
PO Box 340003
Nashville, TN 37203-0003
9780835811927, $12.00,

A little bit of light in our lives can take us so very far. "Joy Boosters: 120 Ways to Encourage Older Adults" is an inspirational read from Missy Buchanan as she presents much to consider in bringing drive and inspiration to the often demotivated elders in our lives. With plenty of to-the-point practical advice for communicating across the generation gap, "Joy Boosters" is a fine addition to any collection on dealing with older people, highly recommended.

The Humor Shelf

Simon's Cat in Kitten Chaos
Simon Tofield
Akashic Books
PO Box 1456
New York, NY 10009
9781617751585 $15.95

Simon's Cat in Kitten Chaos continues the tradition of whimsically wordless, black-and-white cartoons about the antics of the playful, pushy, and ever-hungry pet. In Kitten Chaos, Simon rescues an abandoned kitten... and turns the world of Simon's Cat upside down! An adoptive sibling rivalry ensues over who gets to sleep in the sunbeam, pose for a photograph, or shred the curtains first! Cartoons have varying formats; some fill an entire page, while others are divided into panels or tell a brief narrative sequence across a couple pages, but the entire compilation is very much episodic in its snapshots of daily life with felines. Bonus features include an inset page of removable cat stickers, and a few pages of step-by-step guides for drawing Simon's cat, the kitten, and other lovable creatures. Although Simon's Cat in Kitten Chaos inevitably invites comparisons to the popular newspaper comic character Garfield (and the "world's cutest kitten" Nermal), the wordless, often action-filled panels are quite different in that they feature pure, rambunctious feline behavior, as any cat owners can attest - any anthropomorphic elements (such as the cat or the kitten pointing to their open mouths while hungry) are just what real cats would do if they could! The gentle humor of Simon's Cat in Kitten Chaos makes it a choice gift for cat lovers everywhere. Also highly recommended are the other cartoon books in the Simon's Cat series, including "Simon's Cat: In His Very Own Book", "Simon's Cat: Beyond the Fence", "Simon's Cat: Feed Me!", and the full-color collection "Simon's Cat vs. the World".

The Automotive Shelf

Modified Stock Car Racing
Steve Kennedy
1830A Hanley Road, Husdon, WI 54016
9781583882849, $37.95,

Part of the appeal of high level racing is morphing a car into a speed machine where nothing else matters. "Modified Stock Car Racing: Of the 60s and 70s" is a historical snapshot of this brand of racing that gained popularity throughout these two decades as competitive engineers took it upon themselves to build machines that pushed the limits of cars at the time. With black and white and color photography all throughout, "Modified Stock Car Racing" is a fascinating snapshot of racing history, highly recommended. Also from Iconografix and auto enthusiasts is "Lost Truck Legends" (9781583882962, $34.95) telling the stories of many of the smaller truck companies that have faded over the century but have earned their renown in the history of the vehicle type.

The Dawn of ProStock
Steve Reyes
CarTech Inc.
39966 Grand Avenue
North Branch, MN 55056
9781613250402, $29.95,

Turning cars that were not unlike the ones off the sheet into speed machines caught much allure. "The Dawn of ProStock: Drag Racing's Fastest Doorslammers 1970-1979" touches on the genesis of stock car racing where teams came together behind their driver bringing machines to their maximum potential within the rules. Filled with black and white and color photography all throughout, this read of history of the sport is intriguing and hard to overlook for those curious about the sport and want to learn more. "The Dawn of ProStock" is a must for any history of racing collections, highly recommended.

The Literary Studies Shelf

Robert F. Lawson & Carol S. Lawson, editor
Swedenborg Publishers
320 North Church Street
West Chester, PA 19380
9780877852445, $15.95,

Repetition is a deep part of human nature. "Patterns: Make 'em and Break 'em" is a spiritual anthology of explorations in short fiction and poetry by a diversity of acclaimed authors, looking at patterns and how to find the innate divinity within, as applied to life's many arts. Unique and inspiring, "Patterns" is a strong addition to spirituality and literature collections, not to be missed.

The Photography Shelf

The Book of Gimp
Olivier LeCarme and Karine Delvare
No Starch Press
38 Ringold Street
San Francisco, CO 94103-4403
9781593273835, $49.95,

GIMP is the free alternative, and is very capable of matching its commercial competitors for those willing to learn. "The Book of Gimp: A Complete Guide to Nearly Everything" is a complete and comprehensive manual to the photography enhancement program, and how to get professional results for an unprofessional price, walking readers through the essential GIMP skills and how to turn those essential into high level photo manipulation skills that can't be told different from photoshopped images. Chapters outline how to more effectively use layers, channels, masks, the heal tool, improving old photo quality, panoramas, GIF images, and much more, all presented in full color with easy to follow instructions, "The Book of GIMP" is a vital addition to anyone who relies on GIMP for personal or professional use.

Quiet Beauty
Kendall H. Brown
Tuttle Publishing
364 Innovation Drive
North Clarendon, VT 05759-9436
9784805311950, $34.95,

The garden is a universal concept, but interpreted in many fascinating ways. "Quiet Beauty: The Japanese Gardens of North America" is a collection of nature photography focusing on the Japanese styled gardens all throughout America and Canada, presenting gorgeous and lushful full color photography of each of these gardens, along with a good dose of the history of each of the garden's establishments, and much more. "Quiet Beauty" is an a top pick for anyone with a love of beautiful garden photography.

The Power of Trees
Gretchen C. Daily & Charles J. Katz Jr.
Trinity University Press
One Trinity Place
San Antonio, TX 78212-7200
9781595341327, $12.95,

Trees are the roots of our lives, giving us air, giving comfort. "The Power of Trees" is a collection of poetic dialogue and black and white photography dedicated to these stoic things in our life and how we can see them. Enticing and insightful reading that provokes an appreciation for these majestic lifeforms, "The Power of Trees" is a must for nature and poetry collections, much recommended.

Hot Guys and Cute Chicks
Audrey Khuner and Carolyn Newman
Andrews & McMeel
1130 Walnut Street
Kansas City, MO 64106-2109
9781449432713, $9.99,

Sometimes what you see is what you get. "Hot Guys and Cute Chicks" is exactly what the title says, attractive young men and baby birds, with full color photos on every page containing both of the titular subjects with a bit of info about each of the charming creatures displayed. Filled with depictions of strong manly arms embracing babes, "Hot Guys and Cute Chicks" is a choice pick for anyone in love with photography, hot guys, or cute chicks, highly recommended.

The Christian Studies Shelf

How We Got The Doctrine And Covenants
Richard E. Turley Jr. & William W. Slaughter
Deseret Books
57 West South Temple
Salt Lake City, UT 84101
9781609071509, $34.99,

The four sacred books of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints (commonly referred to as the 'Mormons') are "The Book of Mormon", "The Bible"; "The Pearl of Great Price"; and the "Doctrine & Covenants". This last sacred volume is a collection of the revelations and writings of the church's founder and prophet Joseph Smith Jr. "How We Got The Doctrine And Covenants" by the team if Richard E. Turley Jr. (Assistant Church Historian and Recorder for the Mormon Church) and William W. Slaughter (photograph historian and consultation archivist or the LDS Church History Department) is a beautifully published, 146 page, illustrated compendium providing a thoroughly 'reader friendly' history of how the "Doctrine & Covenants" originated and evolved from its beginnings as written missives set down directly or dictated to others by Joseph Smith Jr. "How We Got The Doctrine And Covenants" provides background to how these writings were circulated as manuscripts and published in a time of mob violence against Joseph Smith Jr. and the Mormon people. There are separate chapters devoted to seven significant printings ranging from the first edition in 1835 down to the modern era in 1981. Of special note is the historical chapter on the "Doctrine & Covenants" predecessor volume "The Book of Commandments" published in 1933. Informed, informative, and impressively illustrated throughout, "How We Got The Doctrine And Covenants" is highly recommended reading for anyone interested in the history and development of the Mormon Church and Mormon theology. Also very highly recommended and published by Deseret Books under the general editorship of Dennis Largey (Professor of Ancient Scripture, Brigham Young University) is the newly published "Doctrine And Covenants Reference Companion" (9781590385999, $59.99, 920 page).

Resilient Ministry
Bob Burns, Tasha D. Chapman, & and Donald C. Guthrie
InterVarsity Press
PO Box 1400
Downers Grove, IL 605151426
9780830841035, $17.00,

A pastor is a leader, and leaders are often stressed to great degrees. "Resilient Ministry: What Pastors Told Us About Surviving and Thriving" is an inspirational and uplifting read for Christians who may be cracking under the pressure of rising to role of community leader, managing the church. Bob Burns and his collaborators take their experience and advise leaders to live and live well with what their congregations expect of them. "Resilient Ministry" is an inspired pick for pastors reference and inspirational collections, not to be missed.

It Is Well With My Soul
Shelly Beach
Discovery House
3000 Kraft Avenue SE
Grand Rapids, MI 49512
9781572935747, $12.99,

Age is unavoidable, and graceful aging is the ability of us all. "It Is Well With My Soul: Meditations for Those Living with Illness, Pain, and the Challenges of Aging" is a Christian driven guide from Shelly Beach as she encourages those who are facing the weight of age, and how to embrace God's will and share his wisdom even as we approach the ultimate fate. "It Is Well With My Soul" is a strong addition to spirituality and Christian collections, not to be missed.

I Am Not But I Know I Am
Louie Giglio
Multnomah Books
12265 Oracle Blvd., Suite 200
Colorado Springs, CO 80921
9781601424280, $13.99,

Realizing we are part of a greater story can do much for us. "I Am Not But I Know I Am: Welcome to the Story of God" is a spiritual read from Louie Giglio who offers his own insights into a spiritual life and forming a better relationship with God, playing a part in his story, and building that meaning and personal relationship with him. "I Am Not But I Know I Am" is a strong pick for Christian spirituality collections, highly recommended.

Be the Sunshine
Angela Thomas
Harvest House Publishers
990 Owen Loop North
Eugene, Oregon 97402-9173
9780736951791, $10.99,

Everyone needs a little sunshine to bless their lives. "Be the Sunshine: Share the Light, and Spread the Joy" is a faith driven inspirational as Angela Thomas who encourages readers to come to understand their own faith and use it to be a bright spot in the lives of those around you. With advocacy for using god's wisdom and being the leader in life, "Be the Sunshine" is a strong, full color devotional that is very much recommended reading.

Beautiful Battlefields
Bo Stern
PO Box 35001
Colorado Springs, CO 80935
9781612913193, $14.99,

The many battlefields of ours lives may prove quite difficult. "Beautiful Battlefields" is a Christian spirituality read aimed at women who want to find aid in the struggles for their life, their love, and find the purpose they seek to empower them through all of the plagues of life. "Beautiful Battlefields" is a must for spirituality and faith driven collections, not to be missed.

Liberty to the Captives
Raymond Rivera
Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Company
2140 Oak Industrial Drive, NE
Grand Rapids, MI 49505
9780802869012, $18.00,

Faith can inspire and free our lives. "Liberty to the Captives: Our Call to Minister in a Captive World" a Christian inspirational from Raymond Rivera who presents his own call for ministry and faith in life, asking readers to break from their life's normal and spread the word of the faith for themselves and those around them. "Liberty to the Captives" is a strong addition to any Christian devotional and motivational collection, very much recommended.

Jesus of Nazareth
Hector E. Hoppe
Concordia Publishing House
3558 South Jefferson Avenue
Saint Louis, MO 63118-3968
9780758638526, $14.99,

The life of Jesus is a model for us to live by and find our own salvation in life. "Jesus of Nazareth" is a spiritual and faithful read from Reverend Hector Hoppe, who writes of how to follow God's plans for us as Jesus has laid out. Deftly translated from the original Spanish to share Hoppe's ideals and explanation of Christ's ways, "Jesus of Nazareth" is a choice addition to any collection of faith and spirituality with a focus on the Christian religion.

New Man Journey
Steve Silver
David C. Cook
4050 Lee Vance View
Colorado Springs, CO 80918
9780781408677, $14.99,

Life needs purpose. "New Man Journey: Finding Meaning in Retirement" is a faith driven inspirational from Steve Silver as he advises readers to find their higher purpose in their retirement years and make the most of the rest of their life by realizing that one's work isn't done just because they stop punching in the clock. "New Man Journey" is an excellent and much recommended read for self-help collections focusing on Christian faith.

The Quiet Place
Nancy Leigh DeMoss
Moody Publishers
820 N. LaSalle Blvd.
Chicago, IL 60610
9780802458469, $14.99,

Small bits of faith can make the world's burden seem ever so lighter. "The Quiet Place: Daily Devotional Readings" is a collection of daily pieces of thought and spirituality from Nancy Leigh DeMoss as she seeks to inspire readers with notes from scripture and wisdom on taking them to heart to face down life as we live. "The Quiet Place" is a must for Christian devotional collections, highly recommended.

A Fresh Look at Confession
David M. Knight
Twenty-Third Publications
PO Box 6015
New London, CT 06320
9781585959013, $12.95,

Letting a secret out is sharing the burden of it. "A Fresh Look at Confession:...why it really is good for the soul" is a spiritual and Christian driven inspirational from David M. Knight who discusses the virtues of confession and how it can help us in our everyday lives, letting the many sins we commit be known. With much to ponder and consider, "A Fresh Look at Confession" is a well worth considering for self-help and Christian studies collections.

Discernment Matters
Mary Margaret Funk
The Liturgical Press
St. John's Abbey, PO Box 7500
Collegeville, MN 56321-7500
9780814634691, $18.95,

Faith can talk to us clearly and allow us to resonate more strongly with those close to us. "Discernment Matters: Listening with the Ear of the Heart" is a spiritual and faithful read from Mary Margaret Funk as she derives her dedicated study of faith and life, drawing form the teachings of St. Benedict and Patrick, sharing how to open and hear the mourning of souls. "Discernment Matters" is a spiritual and dedicated read, a fine addition to the Matters series from Funk, highly recommended.

The Judaic Studies Shelf

Dreaming Of Michelangelo
Asher D. Biemann
Stanford University Press
1450 Page Mill Road, Palo Alto, CA 94304-1124
9780804768811, $50.00,

Michelangelo di Lodovico Buonarroti Simoni (6 March 1475 18 February 1564), commonly known as Michelangelo, was an Italian Renaissance sculptor, painter, architect, poet, and engineer who exerted an unparalleled influence on the development of Western art. Despite making few forays beyond the arts, his versatility in the disciplines he took up was of such a high order that he is often considered a contender for the title of the archetypal Renaissance man, along with fellow Italian Leonardo da Vinci. Michelangelo was considered the greatest living artist in his lifetime, and ever since then he has been held to be one of the greatest artists of all time. "Dreaming of Michelangelo: Jewish Variations on a Modern Theme" by Asher D. Biemann (Associate Professor of Religious Studies, University of Virginia) is a 200 page study of the intellectual and cultural affinities between modern Judaism and the life and work of Michelangelo. Comprised of three major sections (The Unrequited Eros: Michelangelo and the Jewish Love for Italy; The Dream of the Moving Moses: Michelangelo and Jewish Statue-Love; Fragments of Desire: Michelangelo and the Aesthetics of Jewish Thought), "Dreaming Of Michelangelo" is a masterpiece of original scholarship. Of special note is Professor Biemann's 'Epilogue'. Enhanced with extensive notes and a comprehensive index, "Dreaming Of Michelangelo" is a very highly recommended addition to academic library Judaic Studies reference collections and supplemental reading lists. It should also be noted that "Dreaming of Michelangelo: Jewish Variations on a Modern Theme" is also available in an ebook edition (Kindle, $28.50).

Jewish Megatrends
Rabbi Sidney Schwarz
Jewish Lights Publishing
PO Box 237
Woodstock, VT 05091
9781580236676, $24.99,

The times change, and faith must change with it. "Jewish Megatrends: Charting the Course of the American Jewish Future" is a study of American Jewry from Rabbi Sidney Schwarz. Rabbi Schwarz shares his perspectives on the shifts in society and what it means to Jews in the future, and how synagogues and Rabbis can reach out to people with changing perspectives and ideals on their lives. Practical and sage throughout, "Jewish Megatrends" is a wise addition to any Judaic Studies collection focusing on contemporary issues, highly recommended.

The Islamic Studies Shelf

The Bazaar In The Islamic City
Mohammad Gharipour, editor
American University in Cairo Press
420 Fifth Avenue, NY, NY 10018-2729
9789774165290, $39.95,

All human settlements of any significant size had a marketplace to facilitate the exchange of goods and services. The word 'bazaar' was the term used throughout the Middle East for those marketplaces and served more purposes than just the exchange of goods and services. The bazaar was also fulfilled a significant role in Islamic societies, as well as industrial development, impacting upon social, cultural, and political conditions. Knowledgeably compiled and deftly edited by academician Mohammad Gharipour (College of Architecture and urban Planning, Morgan State University, Baltimore, Maryland), "The Bazaar in the Islamic City: Design, Culture, and History" is a 320 page compendium comprised of twelve informed and informative scholarly articles presenting an interdisciplinary exploration of the history and dynamics of the bazaar through individual case studies drawn from the Islamic communities of Cairo, Damascus, Aleppo, Nablus, Bursa, Istanbul, Sana'a, Kabul, Tehran, and Yazd. An impressive work of seminal scholarship, "The Bazaar in the Islamic City: Design, Culture, and History" is a welcome and highly recommended contribution academic library Islamic Cultural & Historical Studies reference collections and supplemental reading lists.

The Fiction Shelf

When the Heart Heals
Ann Shorey
c/o Baker Publishing Group
PO Box 6287
Grand Rapids, MI 49516-6287
9780800720735, $14.99,

Spurned for daring to heal, love may seem out of reach for her. "When the Heart Heals" follows Rosemary Saxon, war nurse of the civil war facing a rough return to civilian life. Finding work and maybe more under Dr. Elijah Stewart, she may have something worth keeping finally...if her town doesn't seek to deprive her of it first. "When the Heart Heals" is a strong pick for historical romance readers, not to be missed.

Evidence of Life
Barbara Taylor Sissel
Harlequin Books
225 Duncan Mill Road
Don Mills, Ontario, Canada, M3B 3K9
9780788315162, $14.95,

The loss of family is the most terrifying thing one can imagine. "Evidence of Life" is a dramatic romance from Barbara Taylor Sissel following Abby as she copes with a vicious storm tearing apart her life and family, the tatters of her life blowing in the wind as she tries to put them together, coping with her mind and the lies that make up her life. "Evidence of Life" is a strong addition to literary fiction collections, highly recommended.

Sarah Skilton
115 West 18th Street, New York, NY 10011
9781419703874, $16.95,

We can train ourselves nonstop, but it might all be for naught. "Bruised" is a novel of the trauma afflicting Imogen, a young woman who took great pride in her Tae Kwon Do expertise. Her pride is shattered when a gunman attacks a diner, and her skills are incapable of saving a life. Exploring the concept of the fight and trying to find love despite the bruising her psyche took, "Bruised" is an insightful story that will be hard to put down, exploring what seek and what we want out of our skills in the martial arts.

Ghosts Dancing
Steven Fortney
Cable Publishing
14090 E Keinenen Rd, Brule, WI 54820
9781934980378, $14.95,

Conflict consumes much of the Europeans settlers relations with the original owners of America. "Ghosts Dancing" is discussing the history of the conflicts in America, as two friends discuss it as they travel through the western frontier, and see the will of the ancestors coping with the weight of the past they have left behind. "Ghosts Dancing" is a strong addition to any fiction collection focusing on American history the fate of the American Indians.

Blue Suede Shoes
Deborah Reardon
River Grove Books
c/o Newman Communications
125 Walnut St. #205, Watertown, MA 02472
9781938416118, $16.95,

Even as we face our own despair, we can try to answer the call of heroism. "Blue Suede Shoes" is a novel following Clare Paxton, a woman struggling with her own broken life trying to piece what she has lost together, as a young girl is reported lost in the forests. Suspecting foul intent and a chance to save a life, Clare must learn about her small town of Danfield, Wisconsin, and find the truth before it's too late. "Blue Suede Shoes" is a riveting and suspenseful novel that will prove hard to put down, recommended.

Venus in the Afternoon
Tehila Lieberman
University of North Texas Press
PO Box 311336
Denton, TX 76203-1336
9781574414660, $14.95,

Brief moments of happiness on the backdrop of life is what we often seek. "Venus in the Afternoon" is a collection of short fiction from Tehila Lieberman, who touches on these episodes of life and living, using humor to explore a poignant nature of life and living. "Venus in the Afternoon" is an excellent choice for anyone who wants poignant, thoughtful short fiction, highly recommended.

Holy Smoke
Frederick Ramsay
Poisoned Pen Press
6962 E. First Ave., #103
Scottsdale, AZ 85251
9781464200922, $14.95,

A break of sacred trust can intensify already grisly crimes. "Holy Smoke" is a novel set in Biblical era Jerusalem, surrounding the violation of a sacred Jewish structure and the mysterious death of the intruder. Gamaliel looks for the truth behind the intrusion, while dealing with the coming major events of 29 CE. "Holy Smoke" is a riveting read that proves hard to put down.

The Mystery/Suspense Shelf

Hammett Unwritten
Owen Fitzstephen
Lisa Michalski
Seventh Street Books
c/o Prometheus Books
59 John Glenn Drive
Amherst, NY 14228
9781616147143, $13.95,

Many of the events that happen in our lives will make for a heck of a story later on. "Hammett Unwritten: A Novel" stars the famed noir writer Dashiell Hammett, following the author in his pre-writing years as a private investigator. Following the writer as he copes with the strange events that occur in the parallel to his famed works, "Hammett Unwritten" proves to be a creative and enticing twist of fact and fiction, very much recommended reading throughout.

The Missing Italian Girl
Barbara Corrado Pope
Pegasus Books
80 Broad Street, 5th Floor
New York, NY 10004
9781605984087, $25.95,

Evil lurks in the chaotic times of turn of the century Paris. "The Missing Italian Girl" is a mystery novel surrounding 1897 Paris. Bernard Martin, a magistrate along with his wife Clarie, delve into the outskirts and dark streets of the French city in order to find the identity of a killer lurking through the city as well as the chaos brewing with an under-appreciated working class. "The Missing Italian Girl" is a strong addition to historical mystery and fiction collections.

Andrew Post
Medallion Press, Inc.
100 South River Street
Aurora, IL 60506
9781605424934, $14.95,

To survive and do what we think is right, we often need to make so many sacrifices. "Knuckleduster" follows Brody Calhoun, a man discharged from the military, injured and needing carotene lenses to see anything. His pay comes from vigilante work from battered women as he hunts down cruel husbands and claims vengeance for them. But in the process, he places himself on the wrong side of the law, even if his intentions are good. "Knuckleduster" is an exciting thriller with plenty of twists and turns, highly recommended.

Galaxy Press
7051 Hollywood Boulevard, Suite 200
Hollywood, CA 90028

Galaxy Press is the quintessential niche publisher in that they are dedicated to bringing the 'Golden Age' of pulp magazine stories and tales of L. Ron Hubbard to a new and appreciative generation of readers. Utilizing original pulp magazine illustrations the produce affordable paperback copies that showcase one of the most imaginative writers of the 1930s and 40s. For example, L. Ron Hubbard's "The Tramp" (9781592123322, $9.95) originally published in the November 1938 issue of 'Astounding Science Fiction' and "The Crossroads" (9781591213681, $9.95) that is drawn from the February 1941 issue of a pulp magazine called 'Unknown'. Both these superbly reproduced stories are enhanced with the inclusion of a glossary, and two special articles: 'L. Ron Hubbard in the Golden Age of Pulp Fiction' and 'The Stories from the Golden Age'. Also of considerable note is the Galaxy Press series of multi-cast audio book adaptations of L. Ron Hubbard's pulp magazine stories. Two particularly outstanding examples are a fantasy set in the world of the circus titled 'If I Were You' (9781592122905, $9.95) which also includes a second fantasy yarn brought to life called 'The Last Drop'; and "Danger In The Dark" (9781592122400, $9.95) set on a remote Pacific island where a man must defeat a god to save the people from annihilation. This vividly presented multicast audio production is augmented with the inclusion of two shorter fantasy tales: 'The Room' and 'He Didn't Like Cats'. Of special note in all Galaxy Press audio book productions is the utilization of music and sound effects to heighten a true 'theatre of the mind' experience for the listener. A complete listing of all of the L. Ron Hubbard stories published and produced are to be found on the Galaxy Press web site at

The Pets/Wildlife Shelf

The Secret Lives of Chickens
Sunny Franson
RJ Communications
9780985510909 $27.95

Author Sunny Franson raised chickens in her backyard for years, and treasured them as intelligent pets and companions (as well as a source of nutritious eggs). The Secret Lives of Chickens or Tales from the Chickenyard and Beyond collects anecdotes of the many quirks and unique personalities of the chickens she cared for, from a proud, even-tempered rooster named Sarge to the proud Rhode Island Red hens, to the gentle Silkie chickens and more. Full-color photographs intersperse this heartfelt testimony. Those wishing to raise backyard chickens themselves may find occasional useful tips, tricks, and techniques, but The Secret Lives of Chickens is primarily a glimpse into how chickens must see the world, not a how-to manual. "The first time that we knew [the chickens] had found the puppy food, they'd managed to overturn the bag and had dumped it everywhere, eating themselves nearly sick... When they came back for more, we chased them away and figured that they had learned that they couldn't invade the puppy's food supply. We were so incredibly naive." Anyone who has ever owned or cared for backyard chickens will find The Secret Lives of Chickens especially insightful. Highly recommended.

Canine Cross Training
Sasha Foster
Dogwise Publishing
403 South Mission Street
Wenatchee WA 98801
9781617811135, $19.95,

A healthy dog is a dog that will go beyond what's expected on the show field. "Canine Cross Training: Building Balance, Strength, and Endurance in Your Dog" is a dog training guide from Sasha Foster, who advises readers to better train their dogs for better performance, applying the principles of cross training to dogs for maximum benefit. Featuring practical advice for conditioning, and activities to share with one's dog, "Canine Cross Training" is a must for those who like to push their dogs further and stronger.

Wild Fox
Cherie Mason, author
JoEllen McAllister Stammen, illustrator
Down East Books
PO Box 679
Camden, ME 04843
9781608932122, $14.99,

With the animal kingdom, there is a bond that can be formed if we so wish to. "Wild Fox: A True Story" is an illustrated memoir surrounding author Cherie Mason's relationship with a wild fox when living in her home in Maine. Forming a unique bond with the animal who remained wild all throughout their connection, she shares the story with JoEllen McAllister Stammen captivating illustrations, created in a tender and warm style. "Wild Fox" is a moving tale of animal relationships, much recommended.

The Money/Finance Shelf

Financial Fresh Start
Shari Olefson
Amacom Books
1601 Broadway
New York, NY 10019
9780814432297, $26.00,

Starting over anew is starting over without the weight of baggage behind us. "Financial Fresh Start: Your Five-Step Plan for Adapting and Prospering in the New Economy" is a guide for making the most out of one's personal finances, stretching money to go further, and finding the tips they need to drive themselves further with success. From practical advice of avoiding predatory practices from banks and credit card companies, managing a mortgage, wise investment, and more, "Financial Fresh Start" is a strong addition to any personal finance and self-help collection, highly recommended.

Real Wealth
Bruce Helmer
Beaver's Pond Press
7108 Ohms Lane
Edina, MN 55439
9781592985692, $19.95,

Good financial sense creates wealth for a future to come. "Real Wealth: How to Make Smart Money Choices for What Matters Most to You" advising readers on how to best manage their money for the future so that riches became wealth and stay that way for the coming years and our future. With sage advice on how to manage your money and make it worth for you while still allowing it to enrich our lives, "Real Wealth" is a must for personal finance and self-help collections, much recommended.

The Poetry Shelf

Lime Green Chair
Chris Andrews
The Wayweiser Press
c/o Dufour Editions, Inc.
PO Box 7
Chester Springs, PA 19425-0007
9781904130512, $16.95,

Disconnected from our world, we can see what happens within it with a certain vividity. "Lime Green Chair" is a collection o f poetry from Australian poet Chris Andrews who offers a certain profound nature to the world and his own dose of humor and living. "Lime Green Chair" is a fine dose of poetic bliss for international poetry fans, recommended. "Pond Life": Bored by ancestral love-letters once posted/in a gap in a wall where the wind sitll moans,/I was transparent but only to others,/like my third cousin's anatomical doll./I sensed he was tactfully not exploiting/the unfair advantage of experience,/while spying things in me that I was dimly/unaware of, as a student of pond life/with a mind full of field-guide illustrations/might spy, beneath rafts of caddis-fly cases/made of anything a silken thread can bind,/ a stirring in the murk, not that he was prone/to creeping monster-hero moralism.

Penelope Shuttle
c/o Dufour Editions, Inc.
PO Box 7
Chester Springs, PA 19425-0007
9781852249502, $28.95,

We all endure hardship and pain in our lives, trying to piece it together for our futures. "Unsent" is a collection of poetry from Penelope Shuttle, both new and selected from twenty two years of her career, touching on her unique poignancy of life and living and what she has endured for the sake of living and sorrow. "Unsent" is a strong pick for world poetry collections. "In Cornish": owl is Ula/Star is Steren/Psycador is a fisherman/Morrab is his coast/His rainbow is camneves/His door is darras/Mor is his sea/Lor is his moon/His ear is scovarn/His eye is lagas/His eyes are dewlagas/Blejen is his flower/His summer is haf/Hunros is his dream/There is more to his lost language/than can fit on a tourist teatowel.

Carolyn Kremers
University of Alaska Press
PO Box 756240
Fairbanks, AK 99775-6240
9781602232020, $14.95,

The lessons of life inspire us ever further. "Upriver" is a collection of poetry from Alaskan poet Carolyn Kremers as she explores what she has learned living so close to the native cultures of Alaska, using her poetry to capture their essence and lives in many ways. "Upriver" is enticing and insightful addition to any poetry collections focusing on native culture, highly recommended. "All I Wanted": All I wanted, my love, was every night to lie(every light-tossed night)/in your arms, like mist, like glass/about to break, like a bell high/enough to be heard above/the trees. All I wanted was for you/to stroke my hair when I cried,/to hear you listen, and be able to say,/yes I do.

Beasts of the Hill
Mark Neely
Oberlin College Press
50 North Professor Street
Oberlin, OH 44074-1095
9780932440440, $15.95,

In nature, there is a good deal of serenity, then there is violence. "Beasts of the Hill" is a collection of poetry from prolific and established poet Mark Neely offers insight on the world as we know it with a certain serenity through it all. "Beasts of the Hill" is well worth considering, highly recommended. "I Pass You on the Street": Under my white shirt/--bright as a policeman's/flashlight-- is a grumbling,/skittish dog, the kind you see//sulking in alleys,/bristling if you near/its dumpster. You think/me a pity.//and hurry past,/sticking close to the wall,/because you also know/enough to be afraid.

Earth Again
Chris Dombrowski
Wayne State University Press
The Leonard N. Simons Building
4809 Woodward Avenue
Detroit, MI 48201-1309
9780814337295, $15.95,

Earth is the ever present factor in all of our lives. "Earth Again" is a collection of poetry from Chris Dombrowski, prolific and respected poet on many fronts who has attained a note of poignancy and living life on many levels. With strong humor and knowledge, "Earth Again" is a must for contemporary poetry collections. "Things Boys Paint": A distant city/barraged by twin-engine bombers, skyscraper flames/incarnadine half-masking a flock of white swans above/two glowering alligators (one solder points his rifle/at the beasts while a second stands between them/frowning) harried by a single ill-defined flying object/which could be helicopter or archangel.

Archive of the Undressed
Jeanette Lynes
Wolsak & Wynn
102 - 69 Hughson Street North
Hamilton, Ontario, Canada, L8R 1G5
9781894987660, $17.00,

Presenting what was once hidden captivates and entices people. "Archive of the Undressed" is a collection of poetry from Jeanette Lynes, her sixth anthology, which continues to bare all of her soul, bringing connections to the literary and performing arts as we know it, drawing from the fading artistry of the burlesque. "Archive of the Undressed" is a must for contemporary poetry collections. "Downtown Troilet": You traded down - now you're a clown,/flap and shimmy in the gutter./Old cigar smoke your new gown./You used to dance - damask uptown./You traded down, you clown,/prancing dog, sad-girl-pirate. Strutter,/you traded down. Now be the clown,/flapper. Shimmy in the gutter!

This is What Happens When Talk Ends
Gale Nelson
Burning Deck Press
71 Elmgrove Ave, Providence, RI 02906
c/o Small Press Distrubution
1341 Seventh St., Berkeley, CA 94710
9781936194063, $14.00,

Poetry is a dialog all in itself. "This is What Happens When Talk Ends" is a collection of poetry from Gale Nelson, who speaks on the works of Shakespeare and the language he used to share his tales, as well as other writers of history. "This is What Happens When Talk Ends" is a fine collection of poetry, much worth considering. "This is What Happens When Talk Ends" is a must for modern poetry collections. "Closest to Stars Unshined": Lists guard the back-lit sheet/now but that's when you drown a throat's splurge/and groan. Sundering into a crown's flood/soaks trophy's brass leg, soaks those daft/tremors in ponds and salvos gently lodged by oceans spent./Tacit sagas exact vile scandals stolen/back from best ages. Long quests are best/trod on left foot, but we lever on. Some koans/shed can bind tales battered by lips sowing best woes/in song. Nuancing the song sheds gloom, pales/sad spot and channels limpid frost. harbors breed/able tangents.

Anne Stevenson
c/o Dufour Editions, Inc.
PO Box 7
Chester Springs, PA 19425-0007
9781852249472, $21.95,

To find things that still surprise us is a wonderful thing. "Astonishment" is a collection of poetry from Anne Stevenson, an international poet with international acclaim, exploring the ideas of insight and imagination and how they meet to create a very unique world. "Astonishment" is a must for any modern poetry collection. "A Cleaner Memory": Every spring renews the blackbird for me/just when he claims the season for himself,/as out of the deep well of his voice I heft,/with a longer rope, a clearer memory.

Blak al-fe Bet
Mitchell L. H. Douglas
Persea Books
277 Broadway, Suite 708
New York, NY 10007
9780892554218, $15.95,

Coping with loss comes in many, many ways. "Blak al-fe Bet" is a collection of poems from Mitchell L. H. Douglas who writes a collection of poems dedicated to the black community and culture, surrounding the loss of a matriarch. "Blak al-fe Bet" is a strong addition to American and cultural poetry collections, highly recommended. "The Letting": If the needle pricks my finger/then it's alright --/gotta let a little blood/for the cotton. Watch it ride/down a cross stitch, resist/the urge to stay blue. Send my fingers/into holy throb, rifled pulse,/the thump of all/gone wrong. Let it go,/let it go, turn it tune/if you like. Makes no difference/if you can't sing, can't raise/the words.

Burning Deck Press
71 Elmgrove Ave, Providence, RI 02906
c/o Small Press Distribution
1341 Seventh St., Berkeley, CA 94710
$14.00 each

Burning Deck Press continues its tradition of inspirational poetry with four new collections ideal for connoisseurs of unique and original verse constructions. Sebastien Smirou's "My Lorenzo" (9781936194087), adeptly translated from the original French by Andrew Zawacki, is a poetic prose narrative, in which the sectioned yet unending flow of words reflect upon the life of Lorenzo di Medici (1449-1492), renowned through history as a great Italian statesman and magnanimous patron of the arts. Rosmarie Waldrop has carefully translated Elfriede Czurda's "Almost 1 Book / Almost 1 Life" from the original German, collecting Czurda's experimental oscillations between prose poetry and structured verse in her first two books. Czurda's rambunctious explorations of multiple meanings in everyday life are flavored with a dash of biting humor and a willingness to poke at the perverse. Sarah Riggs' "Autobiography of Envelopes" (9781936194100) consists of five-line stanzas, and divided into sections related to each letter of the alphabet. Each few pages dwells upon the many facets of transient human communication, envelope-sealed words and messages sparkling across a moment in time, rippling with limitless potential to transmit the smallest triviality or the greatest revolution. P. Inman's "Per Se" is filled with brief, free-verse poems that often play with word position on the page, saying volumes with the barest minimum of letters. The result is a postmodern exploration contemplating concepts that transcend traditional semantics. All four volumes are choice picks for avant-garde poetry collections. "Another Lang(e), for Art Lange" (from "Per Se"): distance evanesce. / pekoe stein duckling. / konitz next to some drummed time. / all the song form dusk coast broken up. / ink neck texture business end. / aleatorist upon nylon. / this often since where weight leaves off. / pony monad ocean neural. / talk nudge plural bone o'hara. / minute-minutes.

The Memoir Shelf

My Mother's Wars
Lillian Faderman
Beacon Press
25 Beacon Street
Boston, MA 02108-2892
9780807050521, $25.95,

The personal stories of war and its long-reaching effects are too often forgotten. "My Mother's Wars" is a gripping personal testimony. Author Lillian Faderman shares her mother's story of immigrating to America with high hopes of dancing, only to be swept up in the undercurrents of New York, and the struggles of being a worker in the garment industry. Facing an onslaught of tragedy, daughter Lillian tells of Mary Faderman's story well, telling how the far reaching effects of two world wars can have on a woman struggling to get by. "My Mother's Wars" is a must for history and memoir collections focusing on personal tales.

Love & Salt
Amy Andrews & Jessica Mesman Griffith
Loyola Press
3441 North Ashland Avenue
Chicago, IL 60657
9780829438314, $14.95,

Faith can form a powerful bond for the years to come. "Love & Salt: A Spiritual Friendship Shared in Letters" is a memoir of friendship and faith as Amy Andrews & Jessica Mesman Griffith share letters written to each other on faith and how that faith stayed with them as they went through their careers and family for the years to come. "Love & Salt" is a strong addition to spiritual memoir collections and Christian studies collections, presenting a very personal view of modern faith.

In Love with Defeat
H. Brandt Ayers
New South Books
105 South Court Street, Montgomery, AL 36104
9781588382771, $29.95,

Progressivism has much to rise above in the deep south. "In Love with Defeat: The Making of a Southern Liberal" is a memoir from H. Brandt Ayers as he shares his experiences in the politics of the South and facing the deeper elements working within the south and overcoming the difficult problems the region faces, as Ayers looks at history and compares the southern struggles to that of other nations throughout. Covering history up to the impact of the election of Barack Obama, "In Love with Defeat" is an intriguing political look at life going against the grain.

Vietnam Labyrinth
Tran Ngoc Chau
Texas Tech University Press
PO Box 41037
Lubbock, TX 79409-1037
9780896727717, $39.95,

Betraying your nation is no action to be taken lightly. "Vietnam Labyrinth: Allies, Enemies, & Why The U. S. Lost the War" is a memoir from Tran Ngoc Chau as he presents his own unique story of choosing to switch sides after five years with the Viet Minh. A unique view of the Vietnam war of one who decided to make this shifting decision that could have easily cost him his life. "Vietnam Labyrinth" is a strong addition to memoir collections focusing on the Vietnam War and those who fought in it.

The Crafts Shelf

Metal Jewelry in Bloom
Melissa Cable
Kalmbach Publishing Company
21027 Crossroads Circle
Waukesha, WI 53186
9780871164438, $21.95,

Metal is more than practical, it can be a charming decoration in itself. "Metal Jewelry in Bloom: Learn Metalworking Techniques by Making Lilies, Daffodils, Dahlias, and More" is a guide to using metal to make charming pieces of jewelry with one's work, creating plenty of original creations, detailing the basics of metal working, bringing them together, all brought together in full glossy color. "Metal Jewelry in Bloom" is a must for anyone who wants to try new craft projects in their life.

The Fantasy/SciFi Shelf

The Archimedes File
R. A. Parish
Dorrance Publishing Co.
701 Smithfield Street, Third Floor
Pittsburgh, PA 15222
9781434917836, $12.00,

Technology does what humanity does better...and what if it realizes it? "The Archimedes File" is a science fiction adventure set in 2302, as humans Elisha and Eleanor live under the thumb of a computer controlled world. As they discover that humans once controlled the earth, they realize that human freedom was once a thing and can still be a thing, as the machines around bear down on them. "The Archimedes File" is enticing and much recommended addition to science fiction collections.

The Travel Shelf

Chile Highlights
Tim Burford
c/o The Globe Pequot Press
246 Goose Lane, Suite 200
Guilford, CT 06437
9781841624082, $24.99,

The eastern strip of South America has plenty to catch the eyes of the tourist. "Chile Highlights" is a guide for those who want to experience all Chile has to offer. It's packed with advice for planning one's trip, the most important sights to see and flavors to take in, as well as information about related areas such as Easter Island. Presented with full color photography throughout, "Chile Highlights" is a must for prospective travelers, highly recommended.

Paris: City Guide
Lonely Planet Publications
150 Linden Street
Oakland CA 94607
9781741794557, $19.99,

Romance, history, sights and sounds, there's a whole list of reasons Paris is quite the getaway. "Paris: City Guide" is a traveler's guide for those who want to get the absolute most out of their visit to the City of Lights. The distilled essence of Paris is covered, including its art, its people, and its culture. With countless maps, guides, and reviews of countless attractions throughout the city, "Paris: City Guide" is a must for travel collections.

The Sports Shelf

Michael Lenehan
c/o Agate Publishing
1328 Greenleaf Street
Evanston, IL 60202
9781572841406, $16.00,

For many youths entering college basketball today, it seems absurd that interracial teams were once the subject of controversy. "Ramblers: Loyola Chicago 1963 - The Team That Changed the Color of College Basketball" discusses the advancement of bringing colored players into college basketball, telling of this season during the chaos of the Civil Rights era that faced conflict of rejection, people refusing to face integrated teams, people defying their state for the good of sportsmanship, and much more. A riveting read of sports and its role in breaking the color barriers, "Ramblers" is a must for any history and sports collection focusing on Civil Rights and black history.

The Complete Guide to Pitching
Derek Johnson
Human Kinetics Publishers, Inc.
PO Box 5076
Champaign, IL 61820-5076
9780736079013, $24.95,

Pitching is far more than hurling a ball at a catcher and hoping it doesn't get hit. "The Complete Guide to Pitching" is a scholarly breakdown of this essential of a baseball game's defense as Derek Johnson discusses the position down to the body mechanics of the pitcher, how to train oneself to become a better pitcher by mastering the specialized pitchers, reading your batter, becoming the fielder when the ball goes live, and much more. With a DVD featuring further lessons and resources, "The Complete Guide to Pitching" is an excellent addition to any sports reference collection with a focus on baseball.

The Biography Shelf

St. Hildegard of Bingen
Carmen Acevedo Butcher
Paraclete Press
PO Box 1568
Orleans, MA 02653
9781612613703, $16.99,

There are those figures who take everything they touch by storm, and leave a lasting impact on all of it. "St. Hildegard of Bingen: Doctor of the Church" tells the story of the titular saint, who throughout the twelfth century did much with her life, capturing much of the spirit of the church during her long life, Carmen Acevedo Butcher presents a fascinating study of an icon of medieval Christianity, making "St. Hildegard of Bingen" a riveting and intriguing addition to any Christian or Medieval history collection, highly recommended.

Chiara Lubich
Armando Torno
New City Press
202 Cardinal Rd.
Hyde Park, NY 12538
9781565484535, $14.95,

After the impact of war ravages our lives, there are those who want to heal the hurt of the world. "Chiara Lubich: A Biography" seeks to tell the story of what this Catholic woman did for the church with her influences in the aftermath of World War II, bringing a virtuous knowledge to all people around her. "Chiara Lubich" is a moving story for biography collections focusing on important figures in the Catholic church.

The Education Shelf

Failure is Not an Option
Alan M. Blankstein
Corwin Press, Inc.
2455 Teller Road
Thousand Oaks, CA 91320-2218
9781452268279, $34.95,

A school aims to allow all of its students to succeed, and succeed well. "Failure is Not an Option: 6 Principles That Advance Student Achievement in Highly Effective Schools" is a guide for educators and administrators who seek out to more greatly improve their schools using these strategies to help their schools flourish and improve up to the modern era more effectively. With plenty of resources to illustrate the methods used within, including a resource rich website, "Failure is Not an Option" focuses strongly on sustainable methods that will promote success for students for years to come.

First Class
Carole Marsh
PO Box 2779, Peachtree City, GA 30269
9780635105066, $14.95,

Education is invaluable, and it has changed much in the past century. "First Class: And the Amazing People and Companies That Wrought This 100-Year Transformation" analyzes the advancements of education over the past century, with Carole Marsh telling the story of these changes and how they came to be over all this times. With plenty of black and white photography throughout, "First Class" is a much recommended look at the changes in American schooling through the past century.

The Business Shelf

The Roadmap to Freedom
Chris McIntyre
Entrepreneur Press
c/o The McGraw Hill Companies
Two Penn Plaza, 11th Floor
New York, NY 10121-2298
9781599184937, $19.95,

Being the head of your own business is suppose to liberate you from the workday nightmares, not cause more. "The Roadmap to Freedom: A Small-Business Owner's Guide to Connecting People to a Core Message" is a guide for better business leadership and how to better make one's brand rise to the optimum standard. From good employee management, good accountability, and making the most out of the connection to customers, "The Roadmap to Freedom" is a must for anyone who wants to make their small business thrive.

The Religion/Spirituality Shelf

Modern Moral Problems
William B. Smith
Ignatius Press
PO Box 1339
Fort Collins, CO 80522
9781586176341, $18.95,

Morality seems harder and harder to fully understand. "Modern Moral Problems: Trustworthy Answers to Your Tough Questions" is a faith-driven philosophical guide; Msgr. William B. Smith who shares his writings on morality and the Catholic church. The modern world presents many new concepts that can be difficult to interpret under traditional reading of the Bible, and Smith tackles challenge. "Modern Moral Problems" is an enticing addition for readers who are faithful yet conflicted, recommended.

Science and Faith
John F. Haught
Paulist Press
997 MacArthur Boulevard
Mahwah, NJ 07430
9780809148066, $19.95,

Science and faith are all too often pit against one another. "Science and Faith: A New Introduction" discusses the dialogue between religion and science and how these two concepts, once bound by intellectual pursuits, have diverged and are wrongfully enemies in many cases. An intriguing and scholarly delve into theology and how one does not have to sacrifice faith or choose to be ignorant of reality, "Science and Faith" is a strong addition to any religion, science, and theology collection, highly recommended.

For Everything A Season
Joan Chittister
Orbis Books
PO Box 308
Maryknoll, NY 10545-0308
9781626980198, $18.00,

There is a time for everything in our life, even with faith. "For Everything A Season" is a spiritual read from Joan Chittister as she takes her experience and knowledge as a figure of women in religious thought, presenting her wisdom of life and living and how to bring it all together in her life. With plenty to ponder the great gift of life and how to use it, "For Everything A Season" is a strong addition to any faith driven Christian studies collection, recommended.

Death As Gateway to Eternity
Hans Kury
World Wisdom
1501 East Hillside Drive
Bloomington, IN 47401
9781936597215, $17.95,

Trying to understand where we are in the bigger picture of the world often challenges our views on the world. "Death as a Gateway to Eternity: Nature's Hidden Message" is a spiritual read, republished from the works of Hans Kury, a Swiss writer and translator who offers insight onto the nature of life, death, and living. With a good dose of insight and humor, "Death as a Gateway to Eternity" is well worth considering for spirituality readers.

The Art Shelf

Flowers in Art
Cindy Ann Coldiron
Schiffer Publishing Ltd.
4880 Lower Valley Road
Atglen, PA 19310
9780764342394, $29.99,

Flowers, common in nature, prove to be an inspiration in art for the centuries. "Flowers in Art: Contemporary International Artists" views floral inspirations in art in modern works in photography, painting, sculptures, and other mediums of art as Cindy Ann Coldiron does well in compiling the works of these many artists, capturing their methods far and well, presenting all of it full color. For those with a love of floral design, "Flowers in Art" is a strongly recommended addition to art collections, highly recommended.

The Health/Medicine Shelf

Stop Dieting and Start Losing Weight
Jen Brewer
Cedar Fort, Inc.
2373 West 700 South
Springville, Utah 84663
9781462110635, $12.99,

Health comes through lifestyle changes, not crash diets. "Stop Dieting and Start Losing Weight" is a health and wellness guide from Jen Brewer who offers good wisdom from on life and living and attaining that higher level of health that seek by making easy and permanent lifestyle changes for better health. With plenty of practical tips and black and white photography throughout, "Stop Dieting and Start Losing Weight" is a must for general wellness collections, highly recommended.

The Technology Shelf

Kindle Fire HD: The Missing Manual, updated edition
Peter Meyers
O'Reilly & Associates, Inc.
1005 Gravenstein, Hwy N.
Sebastopol, CA 95472-2811
9781449357290, $19.99,

The Kindle Fire is full of entertainment and utility for those who know how to get the most out of it. "Kindle Fire HD: The Missing Manual" is an updated edition from Peter Meyers who advises readers on how to better understand the versatile Kindle Fire and use it well beyond being a colorful e-book reader, by watching TV, browsing the web, and even using it as a helpful hand for working. "Kindle Fire HD" is a strong addition to any technology reference collection, and very much recommended for Kindle Fire users everywhere.

The Cookbook Shelf

The Anti -Breast Cancer Cookbook
Julia B. Greer, MD, MPH
Sunrise River Press
30066 Grand Avenue, North Branch, MN 55056
9781934716335, $19.95,

"The Anti -Breast Cancer Cookbook: How to Cut Your Risks with the Most Powerful Cancer-Fighting Foods" is the second cookbook by the author, Julia Greer, written as a companion cookbook to her previous best selling cookbook, "The Anti-Cancer Cookbook." The author's impeccable credentials include an epidemiologist's experience and study of pancreatic, ovarian and breast cancers, and her research led her to present her findings practical preventive recommendations in a single guide/recipe collection which includes both risk reduction strategies and practices and over 200 healthy recipes using ingredients easily available at local farmers' markets. In "The Anti-Breast Cancer Cookbook," Chapters one focuses on the types, onset and definition of breast cancer plus ways to reduce the risk for breast cancer while chapter two presents the role of diet in breast cancer, ending with a list of takeaways which include such recommendations as: "Concentrate on eating fewer animal products and more plant-derived foods, avoid transfats, maintain a healthy weight and exercise daily if possible, eat a varied diet with lots of richly colored fruits and vegetables, nuts, legumes, leafy green and cruciferous vegetables and lower fat (preferably organic) versions of dairy products, and many more. Chapter three contains the majority of the book, which is over 185 pages of recipes for healthy foods, with handy visual symbols or codes for vegan, vegetarian, and gluten-free. Recipes are sorted into muffins, breads and breakfast foods, dips and sauces, side dishes, soups and salads, casual dining: burgers, tacos, sandwiches and more, main dishes, desserts and beverages. Nutritional information for each recipe is presented in a grey shaded sidebar on each page. Ingredients are listed first with standard measurements, and preparation is presented in simple paragraph format. Occasional introductory comments will describe the recipe's uses further, or add more information about its taste and potential use. Some tasty examples of recipes include Lamb-Herb Marinade for Fish, Toasted Pumpkin-Seed Pesto, Squash Risotto with Arugula, Chicken and Navy Bean Salad, Spicy Turkey Relleno Burgers, Penne with Summer Squash, Zucchini and Sugar Snap Peas, Roasted Barbecued Wild Salmon, Steamed Asian Halibut with Sesame Kale, and for dessert, Blueberry Yogurt Tart or Whole-Wheat Dark Chocolate Chip-Nut Cookies. Here is a great variety, indeed a wealth of gourmet recipes to try, with an emphasis on the best of seasonal produce, that will enhance the daily health of its fans and devourers. For breakfast, why not try Walnut, Date and Fennel Scones; for lunch how about Asian Sesame Salad with Soba Noodles? Many delicious side dishes and entrees are offered for the healthy consumer's delight.

I Love Cinnamon Rolls!
Judith Fertig, author
Andrews McMeel Publishing
1130 Walnut Street, Kansas City MO 64106
9781449420697, $19.99,

"I Love Cinnamon Rolls!" is a fantastic collection of cinnamon pastry recipes, spanning from the traditional versions of Easy Cinnamon Rolls, Old-Fashioned Cinnamon Rolls, and No-Knead Cinnamon Rolls to the more unusual Thin Strudel Dough Cinnamon Rolls, and even including Vegan Cinnamon Rolls and Gluten-Free Cinnamon Rolls. Additions for new appetites include Whole Wheat Cinnamon Rolls and you have a complete array of delicious cinnamon goodness in so many fragrant guises. Filled with beautiful color photos of finished products, "I Love Cinnamon Rolls!" is a fabulous cinnamon pastry cookbook for all kinds of home chefs. If you have a chance, try Cardamom- and Cinnamon-scented Swedish Tea Ring, or Going Bananas Vegan Cinnamon Rolls, or even Carrot Cake Cinnamon Rolls with Pineapple-Cream Cheese Frosting in addition to the tried and true Big-As-A-Plate Cinnamon Rolls with Gooey Frosting. You will never regret tasting a single bite from any recipe in this cookbook.

The Digest Diet Cookbook
Liz Vaccariello
Reader's Digest Trade Publishing
44 South Broadway
White Plains, NY 10601
9781621450252 $26.99

The Digest Diet Cookbook gathers 150 brand new, low-calorie recipes that balance convenience and nutrition, illustrated with a handful of color photographs. Healthful dishes such as Roast Herb-Rubbed Turkey Breast, Red Quinoa Salad with Avocado, Frozen Berry Terrine, Butternut Breakfast Bread, Roasted Pepper Soup with Basil Meatballs and much more provide a sumptuous delicacy for every occasion. Excellent, user-friendly tips for mixing and matching recipes, making the best use of leftovers, and maximizing the lean potential of a well-planned diet round out this wonderful year-round cookbook that can be adapted to suit any meal plan. Highly recommended for practical cookbook collections, The Digest Diet Cookbook also includes a free one-year subscription to Reader's Digest magazine!

Green Smoothie Joy: Recipes for Living, Loving, and Juicing Green
Cressida Elias, author
Skyhorse Publishing
307 West 36th Street, 11th Floor
New York, NY 10018
9781620872932, $14.95,

"Green Smoothie Joy" is a fantastic variety of innovative smoothie recipes that boost health, nutrition, detox and weight loss goals in one single delicious beverage that is easy to consume. In addition to over 120 pages of delicious smoothie recipes in multiple categories, there are color photos of freshly prepared smoothies with attractive garnishes, plus added information on basic smoothie awareness such as tips on smoothie makers and juicers, consistency cues or suggestions, taste enhancing tips, and ideas for using milks, nuts, protein powder, yogurt and other thickeners to add nutritional value and thickness. Tons of nutritious smoothie recipes are included, such as Tropical Sweet Green Smoothie, Blackberry & Date Green Smoothie, Apple & Pear Power Green Smoothie, Berry Rocket Green Smoothie, and Dandelion & Apple Green Smoothie. Every recipe lists ingredients in standard measurements on the left, and gives rather extra complete nutritional in a sidebar at the bottom of the page. Preparing and consuming delicious smoothies daily is a great way to boost health, easily increase variety of fruit and vegetable consumption, and enhance detox, digestion, weight loss, and smooth body system functioning. For all these and more added benefits, and also for the fun of it all, read and follow the recipes and recommendations of "Green Smoothie Joy," a fabulous smoothie collection put together by a dedicated smoothie chef and mom.

Classic Snacks
Casey Barber
Ulysses Press
PO Box 3440
Berkeley CA 94703-3440
9781612431215, $17.95,

With a little knowledge, one can capture the tastes of fast food and pre-packaged stuff and better at home. "Classic Snacks Made From Scratch: 70 Homemade Versions of Your Favorite Brand-Name Treats" is a guide for those who want to try to emulate and improve their favorite dishes by using better and all natural ingredients in the process. From favorites like the Twinkie, to regional treats like the Tastykake, to finger foods like Jalapeno poppers, "Classic Snacks Made From Scratch" is a treasure with full color photography all throughout.

How To Boil An Egg
Rose Bakery
Phaidon Press
180 Varick Street, 14th floor
New York, NY 10014
9780714862415, $35.00,

It's a sad cook indeed that cannot boil an egg. But it will be a popular family kitchen chef that will be able to produce 84 different ways to serve eggs to their family be they poached, scrambled, fried, baked, or steamed. All with the help of "How To Boil An Egg", a 136 page illustrated compendium of 'kitchen cook friendly' recipes guaranteed to please any palate and satisfy any appetite. Providing a culinary wealth of tips and techniques, the recipes range from Green Fried Eggs; Lemon Pancakes; Three-Coloured Frittata; and an Egg & Cress Salad; to Scotch Eggs; Green Tea Genoise; Semolina Pudding; and A Simple Apple Flan. Of special note are the recipes for Bearnaise Sauce, Hollandaise Sauce, and home-made Mayonnaise. Whether for Breakfast, Lunch, or Tea Time, "How To Boil An Egg" will prove to be an enduringly popular addition to personal, family, and community library cookbook collections!

The Relationship Shelf

You Lost Him at Hello
Jess McCann
Health Communications, Inc.
3201 S.W. 15th Street
Deerfield Beach, FL 33442-8190
9780757317439, $14.95,

First impressions mean all too much. "You Lost Him at Hello: From Dating to 'I Do', Secret Strategies from One of America's Top Dating Coaches" is a dating guide from Jess McCann as she advises readers on how to best present themselves to help them find their ultimate future husband, realizing that their future is closer at hand than they may truly understand. From realizing what a guy wants, making yourself attractive, and moving with confidence, "You Lost Him at Hello" is worth considering for those struggling with the weirdness of the dating pool.

The Jobs/Career Shelf

The Million-Dollar Race
Kirk Hallowell
Greenleaf Book Group Press
PO Box 91869
Austin, TX 78709
9781608324002, $22.95,

Happiness is more than a paycheck. "The Million-Dollar Race: An Insider's Guide to Winning Your Dream Job" is a fine advisory from Kirk Hallowell as he advises readers to better hunt down their dream job, find the opportunities they seek, consider their ethics and morals, and find the perfect balance of happiness in their life. "The Million-Dollar Race" is a strong addition to business and career collections, not to be missed.

The Parenting Shelf

The Case for Children
Simcha Weinstein
Barricade Books, Inc.
185 Bridge Plaza North, Suite 308-A
Fort Lee, NJ 07024
9781569804742, $16.00,

Parenthood is another stage of life for most, but what does it mean to us as individuals? "The Case for Children: Why Parenthood Makes Your World Better" is an advocacy for parenting and parenthood as Rabbi Simcha Weinstein who advocates the personal benefits of being a parenting and how parenting makes us and our world a better place. "The Case for Children" is a choice addition for anyone considering their status on becoming a parent, recommended.

The Music Shelf

Walk Tall
Cary Ginell
Hal Leonard Performing Arts Publishing
33 Plymouth St, Suite 302
Montclair, NJ 07042
9781458519798, $18.99,

Life rarely comes as we expect or want it to, but overcoming it can take us far. "Walk Tall: The Music & Life Julian "Cannonball" Adderley" is a musical biography of jazz musician Cannonball Adderley who throughout the 1960s and 70s who made his mark trying his hand with many different groups and styles working with many jazz legends in forming his own. "Walk Tall" is a must for any musical historian or for those who want to learn about one of its most vital figures.

The Fishing Shelf

Crappie Fly-Fishing
Terry & Roxanne Wilson
Frank Amato Publications
PO Box 82112
Portland, OR 97282
9781571885005, $19.95,

Common doesn't make them any less exciting to catch. "Crappie Fly-Fishing: A Seasonal Approach" is a guide to catching the most of this common yet delectable fish for those who believe there is something to quantity of the catch as well as the quality. With tips on how to get the most crappie as well as the pitfalls to avoid when trying to make the most out of one's fishing habits, "Crappie Fly-Fishing" is a strong addition to fishing and outdoorsman collections, not to be missed.

The Comix/Graphic Novel Shelf

The Golden Ages Of DC Comics
Paul Levitz
107 Greene Street, New York, NY 10012
9783836535731, $59.99,

The 'Golden Age' of comic publishing as represented by DC publications ran from the beginnings of mass market illustrated stories printed on cheap pulp paper in 1935, through the paper shortages of World War II in the 1940s, to the cultural changes in the genre culminating in 1956. The 'DC' in "The Golden Ages Of DC Comics" stood for 'Detective Comics' and (along with its chief competitor Marvel Comics) dominated the American comic book industry. While the first two enduringly popular and cultural impacting characters from the DC universe were Batman and Superman, the roster of 'super heroes' was a long one and included such pop culture icons (some of whom were drawn from the pulp magazines) included The Shadow, The Flash, Captain Marvel, Wonder Woman, and Hawkman. Other DC comics titles showcased such genres as detective stories, westerns, horror fantasy, and adventure. It was an age of 'All in color for a dime' and was a source of characters and material for radio, movies, and ultimately, television. Compiled with a knowledgeable commentary by Paul Levitz, "The Golden Ages Of DC Comics" is a superbly produced, profusely illustrated, 400 page compendium showcasing the history and development of DC Comics. Informed, informative, and a seminal coffee table art book of classic images, "The Golden Ages Of DC Comics" is enthusiastically recommended for comic book fans and collectors, as well as an enduringly popular addition to both community and academic library 20th Century Popular Culture and Art History reference collections.

Big Nate and Friends
Lincoln Peirce
Andrews & McMeel
1130 Walnut Street
Kansas City, MO 64106-2109
9781449420437 $9.99

As seen in more than two hundred newspapers nationwide as well as online at, Big Nate and Friends is an anthology of black-and-white comic strips about sixth-grader Nate Wright and his wacky friends - including his closest buddies Francis and Teddy, Artur the well-mannered and popular exchange student, and Gina the straight-A (for "annoying", or possibly "aggravating") teacher's pet. In one particularly funny strip, Nate lectures his friends about how to play a board game, saying, "You guys both have the same problem at Monopoly! You're too nice! You never go for the throat! You've got to be ruthless! Win at all costs! Do whatever it takes to beat the other guy! Whatever it takes!". To which they respond, "Wanna team up to bankrupt Nate?" and "Sure!" Big Nate and Friends is a delight to read for all ages, and makes an excellent giftbook for kids, parents, or anyone with a sense of humor.

The Audiobook Shelf

Alex Cross, Run
James Patterson
Hachette Audio
237 Park Avenue
New York, NY 10017
9781607884668 $34.98

Edgar Award-winning author James Patterson presents Alex Cross, Run, the unabridged audiobook rendition of his latest dark work of suspense featuring Detective Alex Cross. Alex has made powerful enemies in his time, including a wealthy party mogul desperate to avoid jail, but Alex's current focus lies in solving a series of three horrific murders, each leaving behind the mutilated corpse of a woman. Could multiple serial killers be on the loose in Washington, DC? The harder Alex concentrates on the case, the more vulnerable he is to the implacable enemy stalking him! A tense, harrowing mystery, Alex Cross, Run will keep the listener on the edge of their seat to the very end. 7 CDs, 7 hours.

Jack of Diamonds
Bryce Courtenay, author
Humphrey Bower, narrator
Bolinda Publishing
186 S Long Swamp Rd
Jackson, ME 04921
9781742679488 $39.99

An unabridged audiobook production, Jack of Diamonds follows a young man eking out a living on the seamier side of life. Born in the grungy slums of Cabbagetown, Toronto during the Great Depression, Jack Spayd escapes his miserable surroundings and his abusive, alcoholic father by learning to play the harmonica and hitting the road. His travels take him from wartime Europe and Canada to Las Vegas, where his life becomes mired in the world of high-stakes poker... a world controlled by ruthless Mafia! A saga of desperation and survival, Jack of Diamonds compels the reader to the very end. 20 CDs, 26 hours 21 min.

The Night Ranger
Alex Berenson, author
George Guidall, narrator
Penguin Audio
c/o The Penguin Publishing Group
375 Hudson Street
New York, NY 10014
9781611761337 $39.95

The Night Ranger: A Novel is the unabridged audiobook rendition Alex Benson's suspenseful saga of international intrigue with deadly consequences. Four friends, all college graduates from Montana, have traveled to Kenya to serve at a refugee camp for Somalis. When they are are abruptly kidnapped, it sparks international headlines. John Wells is asked to find them before it's too late - but East Africa is strange territory to him, and as he investigates the kidnappings, he uncovers a greater malevolent scheme at work. If John Wells can't save the hostages' lives, then the U.S. may respond with a full-force invasion! The clock is ticking to prevent a war in this edge-of-one's seat, all-too-believable thriller. 9 CDs, 11 hours

After Tex
Sherryl Woods, author
Christina Traister, narrator
Brilliance Corporation
PO Box 887
Grand Haven, MI 49417
9781469268163 $14.99

After Tex is the unabridged audiobook version of Sherry Woods' heartfelt novel about Megan O'Rourke, a New York resident drawn back to her grandfather's ranch in Whispering Wind, Wyoming. She has been suddenly named the guardian of Tex's daughter - a relative she never knew about before. As she tries to sort through her feelings, she crosses paths with Jake Landers, who has also returned to Whispering Wind after a long absence. Together, Megan and Jake just might learn a little bit more about the dreams they thought buried and gone forever! An emotional and lingering audio experience, After Tex is highly recommended. 9 CDs, 10 hours 25 min.

Scent of Darkness
Margot Berwin, author and narrator
Books on Tape
c/o Random House Audio Books
c/o The Random House Publishing Group
1745 Broadway, 5th floor
New York, NY 10019
9780385363433 $TBA
9780385363426 $17.50 (audio download)

An unabridged audiobook available on CD or from the publisher as an audio download, Scent of Darkness: A Novel is set amid the bayous of Louisiana. Evangeline is an eighteen-year-old girl who shared a close bond with grandmother Louise, a consummate mistress of crafting scents and perfumes. Louise has left Evangeline with a tiny vial of perfume, accompanied by an ominous note: "Do not remove the stopper, Evangeline, unless you want everything in your life to change." When Evangeline dares to wear the exotic scent of fire, leather, rose and jasmine, she immediately provokes the desire of everyone around her - from strangers on the street, to a young boy at the door, to two very different men who fall head-over-heels in love with her. Becoming the center of everyone's attention puts more and more pressure on Evangeline; she must learn the true secret behind the scent, and the true message that her loving grandmother meant to give, before her whole life unravels! A captivating and suspenseful tale, Scent of Darkness is highly recommended. 6 CDs, 7 hours 1 min.

A Time for War
Michael Savage, author
Peter Larkin, narrator
Macmillan Audio
175 Fifth Avenue, Suite 315
New York, NY 10010
9781427229298 $39.99

Hardcore conservative icon Michael Savage is well-known for his galvanizing and controversial talk radio show "The Savage Nation"; he's ruffled so many feathers that the United Kingdom has forbidden him to enter the country! A Time for War: A Thriller is the audiobook adaptation of Savage's latest novel, an edge-of-one's-seat suspense adventure in which two people are all that stand in the way of a terrorist plot to devastate the military and annihilate hundreds of thousands of innocents. Jack Hatfield is a television host forced off the air by left-wing groups who want to silence his message; Dover Griffith is a principled female staffer at the Office of Naval Intelligence. Together they will confront the head of a corrupt and treasonous electronics megacorporation, and search for the Ground Zero of a deadly toxin before it's released with catastrophic results. Exciting, tense, and sharply written, A Time for War is cutting-edge to the very end.

Taming Your Gremlin
Rick Carson
Harper Audio
10 East 53rd Street
New York, NY 10022-5299
9780062276339 $14.99

Taming Your Gremlin: A Surprisingly Simple Method for Getting Out of Your Own Way is the unabridged audiobook rendition of a self-help classic, first published in 1983, now expanded and updated. Author Rick Carson, creator of the "Gremlin-Taming" method, draws upon Taoist insight and Zen Theory of Change to offer practical techniques for overcoming one's own self-defeating tendencies. Tips, tricks, techniques, and anecdotes teach the listener how to maintain mental and emotional balance, the value of learning to notice and work with options, and bringing light to the nemesis that lurks within the recesses of one's own thoughts. Taming Your Gremlin is an excellent resource for anyone struggling for direction or focus, highly recommended. 5 CDs, 6 hours.

The Pefumed Garden
Sheikh Nefzaoui, author
Richard Burton, translator
Jonathan Keeble, narrator
Naxos of America, Inc.
1810 Columbia Avenue, Suite 28
Franklin, TN 37064
9781843797111 $34.98

A 15th-century Arabian classic about human sexuality, worthy of comparison to "The Karma Sutra", The Perfumed Garden is now available as an unabridged audiobook. Richard Burton's well-known 1886 translation is vividly narrated by award-winning BBC radio play actor Jonathan Keeble. The Perfumed Garden is expressly an adults-only book, filled with how-to instructions for all manner of sexual activities including foreplay, coital positions, means of satisfying both partners, suggestions for promoting sexual health, as well as erotic anecdotes. A timeless expression of human libido, The Perfumed Garden makes an excellent gift for cultured (and sexy) significant other! 5 CDs, 6 hours 34 min.

The Music CD Shelf

Isle of Magic
Mop Mop
Agogo Records
c/o Press Junkie PR
PO Box 156914
San Francisco, CA 94115

Named after a mythical land of musicians who live off the land by day and practice voodoo rites at night, Isle of Magic is the fourth studio album of Mop Mop, a band that draws liberally from jazz, Caribbean rhythms, Afro-funk, and soul. Producer Andrea Benini collaborates with funk superstar Fred Wesley, Trinidad native poet and singer Anthony Joseph, and Finnish-Egyptian vocalist Sara Sayed on original songs in this eclectic and wildly creative collection. A treasure for connoisseurs of multicultural music! The tracks are"Jua Kiss", "Let I Go", "Kamakumba", "Heritage", "Phantom of the Panther", "Run Around", "The Golden Bamboo", "Loa Chant", "Black Ivory", "Damballah", "Mojomamy", "Afro Jojo Part One", and "Afro Jojo Part Two".

Walk With Me
The Skatalites
Moondust Records
c/o Press Junkie PR
PO Box 156914
San Francisco, CA 94115

Walk With Me celebrates the great traditions of Reggae and Jamaican music. It features the final recordings performed by drummer Lloyd Knibb before he passed on, and consists of eleven tracks in honor of musicians who are no longer with us. The Skatalites, an eclectic group of performers who began performing in Jamaica in May 1964 and whose Ska music caught on fire worldwide, bring vibrancy, enthusiasm, and love of the art to this "must-have" album for fans of the genre. Highly recommended. The tracks are "Desert Ska", "Lalibela", "Hot Flash", "The Leader", "Love is the Way", "Walk With Me", "Piece for Peace", "Song For My Father", "Little Teresa", "King Solomon", and "Dub Lalibela".

The DVD Shelf

Miss Fisher's Murder Mysteries, series 1
Acorn Media Group
8515 Georgia Avenue, Suite 620
Silver Spring, MD 20910-3403
9781598289343 $59.99

Based on the novels by Kerry Greenwood, and originally broadcast on public television, Miss Fisher's Murder Mysteries series 1 tells the story of Honorable Miss Phryne Fisher, a glamorous, sharp-tongued, quick-thinking woman detective who holds her own in the male-dominated world of 1920s Melbourne, Australia. Her investigations take her to the dark places of the city, from jazz clubs to seedy alleys, but perhaps the most menacing threats stem from her shadowed past. Bonus features include cast interviews, a "meet the creators" vignette, a behind-the-scenes set tour, and more. Miss Fisher's Murder Mysteries is a treat for fans of drama, intrigue, and whodunnits, but not recommended for young children due to some scenes of violence, sexual situations, or drug use. 13 episodes on 4 DVDs (or 3 Blu-ray discs, for the same price), 706 min., SDH subtitles, widescreen.

Elk in America
Narrated by Stacy Keach
Janson Media
9781568394535 $24.95

Elk in America (50 min.) is an international award-winning documentary about the lives of majestic wild elk in their natural North American habitat. Actor Stacy Keach guides the viewer to this stunning portrayal of an animal that figures prominently in Native American culture and the history of American hunting. Once numbering as high as an estimated ten million, the North American population was drastically reduced to less than 100,000 by the early 1900's. Today, restoration and conservation efforts are gradually replenishing elk in states where they had been hunted to virtual extinction, including Kentucky and Tennessee. Footage of elk being born, confronting savage predators and natural hazards, facing off against one another during the mating season, and more enlivens this amazing documentary, highly recommended especially for its visual beauty and educational value. Also a choice pick for public library DVD documentary collections is "The Secret Life of Whitetails" (60 min., $24.95), a saga of the yearly cycle of whitetail deer shot in glorious high definition.

Girl Model
First Run Features
630 Ninth Avenue, Suite 1213
New York, NY 10036

Girl Model (77 min.) is a documentary examining the hard realities of young girls in the modeling industry, particularly those who are scouted in faraway countries. Ashley, a former model who now works as a scout, finds Nadya, a 13-year-old rural girl who must adjust to the challenges of Tokyo to pursue her new modeling career. A striking portrait of the challenges and hardships that modeling demands of vulnerable young adults, Girl Model is absolutely unforgettable. Eight bonus scenes are included within its special features. Also highly recommended is the First Run Features movie "Photographic Memory" (87 min.), about a father attempting to bridge the divide between himself and his internet-obsessed son.

Catching Hearts
A film by F.C. Rabbath
Vision Video
P.O. Box 540
Worcester, PA 19490

Catching Hearts is an emotional DVD about the profound changes that transform one man's outlook on life forever. Professor Mark Gavin is an author and speaker whose popularity comes from his logical disbelief in God. But when an otherwise inexplicable event transforms his life and capsizes his faith in atheism, he must face a stark choice. Will he surrender the very philosophies that brought him great wealth for so many years? What is he to say to his two greatest fans - a short-sighted young man who drifts from party to party, and a woman burndened with guilt over her past? Each finds Gavin's assertions that life is meaningless a comfort, but when the three of them encounter one another, each will have to re-examine their most fundamental assumptions. A thoughtful, spiritually inspired movie that will prompt the viewer to think long and hard, Catching Hearts is highly recommended. 74 min, with a "behind-the-scenes" slideshow bonus feature.

Boston Body Barre Sculpt Express Pilates and Barre Fitness Program
Zayna Gold
Privately Published
c/o 411 Video Information
PO Box 1223
Pebble Beach, CA 93953

Founder and co-owner of Boston Body Pilates and Boston Body Barre Zayna Gold, whose honors include the "Next Pilates Instructor" award by "Pilates Anytime" in 2011, presents "Boston Body Barre Sculpt Express Pilates and Barre Fitness Program" (60 min.), a fitness DVD that blends the best of two excellent strength and flexibility-building disciplines. The routine is accessible to viewers of all backgrounds and features routines to tighten and tone the buttocks, arms, abs, and legs. A "10-Minute Butt Blaster" bonus feature rounds out this user-friendly workout. Also highly recommended is Gold's previous fitness DVD, "Boston Body Barre" (60 min., $20.00), a solid workout emphasizing vigorous cardio (as opposed to the body-sculpting focus of "Sculpt Express").

Full Fitness Fusion
Ivy Ingram Larson, A.C.S.M. HFS
Clean Cuisine
c/o 411 Video Information
PO Box 1223
Pebble Beach, CA 93953

Full Fitness Fusion is a DVD workout that prioritizes efficiency for people who enjoy reaping the benefits of a no-impact workout, but are short on time. The program is designed to keep the heart rate elevated while toning muscles, and is suitable for practitioners of all skill and experience levels. Full Fitness Fusion expects the viewer to have on hand some inexpensive equipment: a sturdy chair, dumbbells weighing 3-8 pounds, a 5-15 pound kettlebell, and a yoga mat. The program itself consists of an optional warm-up routine, a thirty-minute solid workout balancing strength and endurance, and a ten-minute cool-down featuring flexibility-enhancing stretches and inspiration from yoga. Full Fitness Fusion is highly recommended as a companion to the "Clean Cuisine" book and eight-week anti-inflammatory nutrition program, or as a stand-alone exercise video. 45 min.

Ballet Body series
Leah Sarago
8515 Georgia Avenue, Suite 650
Silver Spring, MD 20910
$16.99 each

Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist Leah Sarago presents the Ballet Body series, a trilogy of widescreen fitness DVDs for practitioners of all skill and experience levels, designed to build power, flexibility, and coordination. "Ballet Body: Upper Body Workout" (9781621720485, 46 min.) uses a mat and simple 2 to 5 pound hand weights to help condition one's upper body with isometric exercises, as well as judicious application of the stretch-reflex principle and muscle-contraction training. "Ballet Body: Lower Body Workout" (9781621720034, 54 min) emphasizes sculpting the thighs and backside, with help from a mat and a chair. A stretching session drawing upon yoga and dance rounds out this solid, calorie-consuming barre routine. "Ballet Body: Core Workout" (9781621720478, 45 min.) applies elements of ballet, dance, Pilates, and yoga on a simple mat to strengthen the core, stretch the spine and back, build up the abs and tighten the belly. All three are excellent additions to any workout collection, good for targeting problem areas and helping the user look and feel great!

Bellyfit Elements with Alice Bracegirdle
c/o 411 Video Information (publicity)
PO Box 1223
Pebble Beach, CA 93953

Bellyfit Elements is a five-DVD workout set created especially for women, by fitness professional Alice Bracegirdle. Incorporating elements of bellydance, African dance, Bollywood, Pilates, yoga, meditation, and more, Bellyfit Elements is filled with moves and postures designed to improve both physical and mental well-being. Original music accompanies the thirty-minute cardio routine and thirty-minute strength training and stretches on each of the five DVDs: Earth (focusing on the rear, quads, inner thighs, hips, and pelvis), Air (abs, arms, shoulders, chest, and upper back), Fire (core, mid and upper back, shoulders and arms), and Water (abs, waistline, hips, and lower back), and Spirit (whole-body workout applying all the other elements). Bellyfit Elements is thoroughly accessible to women of all fitness levels, and an excellent choice for combating the winter doldrums! 5 DVDs, 300 min.

The Metaphysical Studies Shelf

The Path of Emotions
Dr. Synthia Andrews, ND
New Page Books
c/o Career Press Inc.
220 West Parkway, Unit 12
Pompton Plains, NJ 07444
9781601632388 $16.99

The Path of Emotions: Transform Emotions into Energy to Achieve Your Greatest Potential is a metaphysical self-help guide to tapping into the power of mind-body communication. Chapters teach the reader about the importance of being in tune with and harnessing one's emotions, whether they are positive or negative. From learning how to analyze one's instincts and gut reactions, to releasing (rather than suppressing) emotions that seize up one's energy, The Path of Emotions is a valuable resource for applying emotions as motivational fuel to achieve one's dreams. "Meditation changes our state of being, and therefore our perceptions and how we receive them. Such shifts are quantified by changes in brainwave patterns that are associated with specific states of awareness. Choosing to meditate is choosing to elicit the same effects as transcendent emotions, and the more time we spend meditating, the more permanently we are altered."

The Secret History of the Reptilians
Scott Alan Roberts
New Page Books
c/o Career Press Inc.
220 West Parkway, Unit 12
Pompton Plains, NJ 07444
Warwick Associates (publicity)
18340 Sonoma Highway, Sonoma, CA 95476
9781601632517 $16.99

The Secret History of the Reptilians: The Pervasive Presence of the Serpent in Human History, Religion, and Alien Mythos proposes a daring metaphysical theory - that non-human intelligent life interacted and possibly mated with early humans. Could these non-humans have been reptilian in nature? Recurring reptile mythology in a diversity of cultures, from Nachash in the Garden of Eden to Atum the Egyptian snake-man to Quetzalcotl the feathered serpent god of the Mayans, carries fascinating implications! A handful of black-and-white photographs illustrate this illuminating glimpse into the religious, archaeological, and cultural indicators of just how prominent a role that intelligent reptilian beings might have played in the evolution of mankind.

My Science, My Religion
Michael A. Cremo
Torchlight Publishing
PO Box 52
Badger, CA 93603
9780892133956, $35.00,

Science and religion have clashed in recent years, and a key to understanding both is understanding why. "My Science, My Religion: Academic Papers (1994-2009)" is a collection of writings from thinker Michael A. Cremo, who presents his unique view of this relationship of concepts, and his own ideas on the origins of humanity and the origins of modern science and the universe itself. "My Science, My Religion" is an intriguing delve into science and the metaphysical, recommended reading that should not be swiftly overlooked.

Science and the Afterlife Experience
Chris Carter
Inner Traditions International, Ltd.
One Park Street
Rochester, VT 05767
9781594774522, $18.95,

In the infinite scope of the universe, where does the soul reside? "Science and the Afterlife Experience: Evidence for Immortality of Consciousness" is a metaphysical spirituality read from Chris Carter as he explores the concepts of past lives, reincarnation, religion, and what lies beyond the death and the soul eternal. An intriguing dissection of consciousness and what it means to the history of our lives and world, "Science and the Afterlife Experience" is a strong addition to metaphysical spirituality collections, recommended.

The Self-Help Shelf

Provocative Coaching
Jaap Hollander
Crown House Publishing
6 Trowbridge Drive, Ste. 5, Bethel, CT 06801
9781845908577, $32.95,

Sometimes the best thing to get you going is a little heckling. "Provocative Coaching: Making Things Better by Making Them Worse" is a different take on inspiration and motivation as author Jaap Hollander encourages a bit of humor and provocation in getting some people moving and striving. Using his expertise as a clinical psychologist with a good dose of knowledge, "Provocative Coaching" presents a new approach to psychotherapy which may work for the better.

The Civil War Shelf

Fight All Day, March All Night
Wayne Mahood
Excelsior Editions
c/o State University of New York Press
State University Plaza
Albany, NY 12246-0001
9781438445076 $24.95

Fight All Day, March All Night: A Medal of Honor Recipient's Story gathers the Civil War letters of Morris Brown Jr., who served the Union side and eventually earned the rank of acting regimental commander of the 126th New York Volunteers. Professor Emeritus Wayne Mahood provides context to Brown's vivid descriptions of the war. Though Brown had to face the cold reality of the threat of death, he also held tenaciously to his ambitions of earning renown, as well as securing himself financially. His ambition, drive, and analytical mind all contributed to him earning a Medal of Honor for his valor. Fight All Day, March All Night is an unforgettable journey, and a welcome addition to Civil War reading lists.

The Human Sexuality Shelf

Philosophies Of Sex
Renee Bergland & Gary Williams, editors
Ohio State University Press
180 Pressey Hall, 1070 Carmack Road
Columbus, OH 43210-1002
9780814211892, $49.95,

In biology, a hermaphrodite is an organism that has reproductive organs normally associated with both male and female sexes. Historically, the term hermaphrodite has been used to describe ambiguous genitalia and gonadal mosaicism in human beings. Aptly compiled and deftly edited by the team of Renee Bergland (Hazel Dick Leonard Professor of English and Gender/Cultural Studies, Simmons College, Boston, Massachusetts) and Gary Williams (Professor and Chair of the Department of English, University of Idaho, Moscow, Idaho), "Philosophies of Sex: Critical Essays on The Hermaphrodite" is a 304 page compendium comprised of ten original works of seminal scholarship by a roster of knowledgeable academicians and researchers in the field of human sexuality. The articles focus upon the portrayal of hermaphrodites in literature such as in Julia Ward Howe's posthumous publication in 2004 of her novel 'The Hermaphrodite' (written around 1847) and Louisa May Alcott's 'Mephistopheles' (written in 1866). An anthology comprised from beginning to end with impressive scholarship, "Philosophies of Sex: Critical Essays on The Hermaphrodite" is informed, informative, thoughtful, thought-provoking, and a strongly recommended addition to academic library reference collections in general, and Julia Ward Howe literary studies supplemental reading lists in particular.

The Genealogy Shelf

History for Genealogists
Judy Jacobson
Clearfield Company
3600 Clipper Mill Road, Suite 260
Baltimore, MD 21211
9780806354392 $33.00

History for Genealogists: Using Chronological Time Lines to Find and Understand Your Ancestors lives up to its title with its plain-terms discussions of how to make use of timelines when learning about one's ancestors. Chapters outline how to create a timeline and match the lives that one is researching against major historical events, ranging from epidemic outbreaks to economic swings, wars, religious movements, and more. Scores of sample genealogy-related timelines intersperse the helpful instructions. "The disciplines of genealogy and history can work together to the benefit of each other. Fortunately, genealogists are beginning to recognize the importance of history when researching their families and using it to interpret the past. Likewise, historians are beginning to explore genealogies for social data in their attempt to understand changes, explain traditions and provide insights into civilization as a whole." Thoughtful, accessible, and featuring an extensive index for easy reference, History of Genealogists is enthusiastically recommended as a supplementary resource especially for amateur and aspiring genealogists.

The Theatre/Cinema/TV Shelf

Doctor Who FAQ
Dave Thompson
Applause Books
c/o Hal Leonard Performing Arts Publishing Group
19 West 21st Street, Suite 201
New York, NY 10010
9781557838544 $22.99

Doctor Who FAQ: All That's Left to Know About the Most Famous Time Lord in the Universe is an in-depth guide, reference, and resource concerning one of the most enduring and popular science fiction television shows, from its beginnings on PBS in the 1970s to its widespread fandom today. A complete episode guide as well as essays about the Doctor's many foes, the regenerative incarnations of the Doctor, background information on the episodes' creation, black-and-white photographs, and more fill this "must-have" companion volume especially recommended for fans of the iconic British series! Highly recommended.

The Political Science Shelf

The Illusion Of History
Andrew R. Russ
Catholic University of America Press
620 Michigan Avenue NE
Washington DC 20064
9780813220055, $69.95,

"The Illusion of History: Time and the Radical Political Imagination" by academician Andrew R. Russ (Lecturer in European Studies at the University of Adelaide, Australia) is a 336 page compendium that focuses on the political thought of Jean-Jacques Rousseau, Karl Marx, and Michel Foucault and their philosophical orientations which reveal that despite the commonly accepted notion that they had strong senses of history, they were extraordinarily dependent upon the Enlightenment Era philosophy of Immanuel Kant. A work of impressive and original scholarship, "The Illusion Of History" is organized into four major sections (Jean-Jacques Rousseau; Karl Marx; Michel Foucault; Kant and Kafka). Of special note is Professor Russ' 'Conclusion'. Enhanced with appendices of Rousseau's 'Narrative of History' and Marx's 'Engine of History', an extensive bibliography and a comprehensive index, "The Illusion Of History" is highly recommended for academic library European Political Science reference collections and supplemental reading lists.

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