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The Bookwatch

Volume 14, Number 2 February 2019 Home | BW Index

Table of Contents

Reviewer's Choice Philosophy Shelf Woodworking Shelf
Health/Medicine Shelf Audiobook Shelf Needlecraft Shelf
American History Shelf Science Shelf Technology Shelf

Reviewer's Choice

How to Lie With Charts, fourth edition
Gerald Everett Jones
LaPuerta Productions
9780996543866, $29.95,

Public speakers, presenters, statistics students, and anyone who wants to understand how numbers translate into effective charts must make How to Lie With Charts part of their education. More so than any general book on statistical processes, uses, and translation, How to Lie With Charts provides a thorough understanding of the process of interpreting and compiling numbers. It creates a foundation textbook on data visualization that is central to understanding the abuses and uses of data; especially important in a world that increasingly focuses on such data as both essential and suspect. How to Lie With Charts is very highly recommended as an essential, clear, thought-provoking text, and should be required reading not just for math or business courses, but for anyone interested in critical thinking and basic data analysis skills.

The Philosophy Shelf

Christian cotton and Robert Arp, Editors
Open Court
9780812699883, $19.95,

WikiLeaking: The Ethics of Secrecy and Exposure reinforces Open Court's notion that philosophy isn't just a science to be regulated to studies of the past, but is ever-present in modern current events. Here twenty philosophers reflect on the ethical issues posed by WikiLeaks in a survey that blends history and politics with philosophical and ethical considerations. From definitions of truth and the presence of secrecy in a free society to the notion of lies perpetuated for the greater good and the evolution of "new norms" and moral psychology, WikiLeaking goes far beyond the phenomenon of Wiki to delve into the foundations of modern thinking, socially accepted actions, and ethical and philosophical debates.

The Woodworking Shelf

Building Unique and Useful Kids' Furniture
Spike Carlsen
Linden Publishing
9781610353250, $22.95,

Building Unique and Useful Kids' Furniture: 24 Great Do-It-Yourself Projects comes from an award-winning master carpenter who provides handymen of all talents with a clear guide to building kids' furniture. Modern designs, fun details, and projects that require a minimum of tools and knowledge blend to create a step-by-step guide packed with color photos. There are even notes about which stages or projects can be accomplished with a child's help, making this a fine, unique collection of original, practical pieces kids and their parents will enjoy.

The Health/Medicine Shelf

Kyle Books

Two fine new health guides offer tips that are recommended for those interested in maintaining or improving health. Maeve Madden's Beat Your Bloat (9780857834898, $16.99) blends exercises with recipes to promote digestive health, and is more than a health guide, but a lifestyle blueprint. A healthy lifestyle doesn't have to be time-consuming or complicated: Maeve's approach involves knowing what foods to substitute for others in a healthier diet, incorporates yoga into other home remedies such as tonics for beating bloat, and pairs full-page color photos with recipes that have been adapted for various purposes (such as holiday entertaining) and easy production. Holly Davidson's Active: Workouts That Work for You (9780867834461, 16.99) pairs strengthening exercises with a difference: these are workouts that can be done under a variety of situations. Some are done at the gym, using gym equipment. Some can be done in a studio (yoga, Pilates, stretching), while others are best done outdoors in nature. Packed with color photos that clearly illustrate poses and processes, Active: Workouts That Work for You makes it difficult to maintain that there's no time for exercise.

The Audiobook Shelf

Hachette Audio

These audio productions are top, recommended picks for any collection and listener looking for a combination of inspiring writing and excellent narrators to enhance it. Anthony Scaramucci's Trump: The Blue-Collar President (9781549199714, $30.00) is read by the author, which lends authenticity and a familiar voice to his story of Donald Trump's allure and commanding appeal. The rise and fall of the author, "the Mooch", is an adjunct to this insider's survey of the rise of Trump's America and his appeal, and provides much food for thought, especially backed by this insider's personal and intimate associations with Trump. Corey R. Lewandowski and David N. Bossie's Trump's Enemies: How the Deep State is Undermining the Presidency (9781549174254, $35.00) is read by John Pruden, who lends a seasoned, clear, and evocative presence to this story, which includes an exclusive interview with Trump. The authors were present during the transition period and saw firsthand the evolution of the resistance movement in the White House even before Trump got going. Pro-Trump listeners will find much to reflect on, here. Ben Bradlee Jr.'s The Forgotten: How the People of One Pennsylvania County Elected Donald Trump and Changed America (9781478995838, $35.00) is read by Kiff Vandenheuvel, includes a .pdf of photos, and reviews the politics and social climate of a country that had voted Democratic for decades until Trump flipped it. It documents how this country's voters came to feel alienated from their party and the social and economic changes which rocked their world and led them to believe Trump offered more hope for change than Clinton. In essence, this story pinpoints the roots of Trump's success, and should be listened to by anyone interested in this divided nation and its political realities.

The Needlecraft Shelf

Martingale & Company

These fine new additions are recommended for both novice and experienced quilters looking for something different. Vintage Legacies by Carol Hopkins (9781604689785, $25.99) focuses on vintage quilt productions and builds on her prior Civil War Legacies quilting series. Here she provides fourteen patterns for lap-size to twin quilts that reflect Civil War Era history, including information about nineteenth-century life and times. Lisa Bongean,'s Moda Block Heads: 48 Quilt-Along Blocks Plus Settings for Finished Quilts (9781604689778, $27.99) gathers contributes from six celebrity quilt designers who provide blocks and sampler patterns to use with them. Various ideas for the 6" quilt block range from traditional to modern influences and are accompanied by professional sewing and piecing tips.

The American History Shelf

What Would Mrs. Astor Do?
Cecelia Tichi
Washington Mews Press
c/o New York University Press
9781479826858, $24.95,

What Would Mrs. Astor Do? The Essential Guide to the Manners and Mores of the Guilded Age might initially seem to be a book of etiquette from bygone years, but it also is an unexpectedly lively history and will delight history readers who receive a fun dose of facts and insights from early New York women's experiences of the late 1800s. From correspondence and handwriting instructions to Mrs. Astor's view on sports and healthy pursuits, this provides a blend of etiquette and social history that nicely details New York culture and decorum for leisure readers as well as students of history and women's studies.

The Science Shelf

Scientifically Thinking
Stanley A. Rice
Prometheus Books
9781633884700, $25.00,

Scientifically Thinking: How to Liberate Your Mind, Solve the World's Problems, and Embrace the Beauty of Science is directed not to the scientist per say but to any reader interested in links between scientific analysis and thinking and everyday life. It comes from a scientist devoted to drawing links between science and common sense, who examines the reasoning process and rationales of science with an eye to exploring how science works. More than a survey of process, however, he draws important links to how science can relate to everyday problems, surveying thought processes and some of science's major ideas. The result thus will find a place not just in science holdings, but in general-interest collections.

The Technology Shelf

Radar Systems and Radio Aids to Navigation
A.K. Sen and A.B. Bhattacharya
Mercury Learning
c/o Stylus
9781683921180, $79.95,

Radar Systems and Radio Aids to Navigation provides a weighty, comprehensive reference that should be required additions to any collection strong in electronics theory in general and radio and navigation systems in particular. It explains how navigation aids are created and used, includes plenty of scientific and engineering specs for antennas, Doppler radar, and more, and offers chapters that cover both aircraft and nautical navigation techniques alike. Backed with mathematical formulas and discussions of common problems in transmission and reception, Radar Systems and Radio Aids to Navigation is a 'must' for any college-level or professional reference collection.

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

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